Eight killed in Nepal Army chopper crash
At least eight soldiers were killed on Thursday when a Nepal Army helicopter crashed while on its way to fight Maoists.india Updated: Apr 06, 2006 19:45 IST
At least eight soldiers were killed on Thursday when a Nepal Army helicopter crashed while on its way to fight Maoists who attacked government offices and security camps in a southern district, leaving 11 people dead.
Royal Nepalese Army spokesman Nepal Bhushan Chand said bodies of eight soldiers including that of a Major were found from the site where the night vision helicopter crashed.
It was one of the two choppers on its way to Malangawa town, 120 km south of Kathmandu, where hundreds of Maoists conducted overnight raids coinciding with an opposition general strike.
The second chopper returned to the capital after being unable to land.
Maoists rebels had claimed responsibility for downing the chopper, but the army official denied it saying "this was a technical fault and we have already sent an investigation team to look into the matter."
At least five policemen and six Maoists were killed in the fierce fighting that followed the rebel raids on government and security establishments in Malangawa, the district headquarters of Sarlahi near the Indian border.
The rebels also set free some 100 prisoners after bombing the district jail, and took at least 20 hostages including a dozen policemen.
Those abducted also include chief district officer Bodh Raj Adhikari, eyewitnesses said.
The rebels also targetted offices of administration, land revenue and police besides an army barrack.