Two helicopter crashes in Afghanistan have killed 14 U.S. troops and
civilians in one of the deadliest days for U.S. forces since the 2001
The U.S. Embassy in Kabul says three civilian embassy staff and seven
U.S. troops died in the first crash Monday in western Afghanistan.
NATO says the helicopter went down after a fight with insurgents
suspected of drug trafficking. It says 12 suspected enemy fighters were
The Taliban is claiming responsibility for taking down a helicopter in
western Badghis province, but NATO says it does not believe the
helicopter was shot down.
In a separate incident, four U.S. troops died Monday when two helicopters collided in flight in southern Afghanistan.
U.S. President Barack Obama is discussing Afghanistan Monday at the White House with his national security team.
He is debating whether to announce a new war strategy before Afghanistan concludes its election process.
The country has scheduled a run-off presidential election on November 7, after widespread fraud marred the initial August vote.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai's rival, Abdullah Abdullah, said Monday
the country's election commission chief has no "credibility" and should
be replaced before the run-off.
Also in Kabul Monday, Afghan officials say 15 people were wounded in
clashes with police during a second day of anti-U.S. protests. The
protesters are angered by allegations that Western troops burned a
Koran, the Muslim holy book.
U.S. and Afghan authorities deny the allegation.
The director of Afghanistan Rights Monitor, Ajmal Samadi, tells VOA the
people of Afghanistan are beginning to question Washington's commitment
to their country. He says some people are concerned the Taliban could
return to power.