Three killed as Taliban crash captured US Black Hawk helicopter in training exercise

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Three people have been killed and five injured after a helicopter left behind by the US in Afghanistan crashed on Saturday during a Taliban training exercise.

“An American Black Hawk helicopter, which was for training, crashed due to a technical problem inside the campus of the National Defence University,” said Enaytullah Khowrazmi, a spokesperson for the Taliban administration’s ministry of defence.

It is unclear how many helicopters left behind by the US are operational. The Taliban took control of the choppers as they took over the country in August last year after the US withdrew from Afghanistan following two decades of war.

Before they left the country, US forces deliberately damaged some military aircraft, weapons systems, choppers and armoured vehicles at the Kabul airport hangar. Hundreds of Afghan forces had also flown military planes to central Asian nations including Tajikistan when the Taliban seized power in Kabul in mid-August.

The withdrawal of the US from Afghanistan saw scenes of chaos as thousands of Afghans desperate to leave the country thronged the Kabul airport in search of a way out before the final US cargo planes departed.

The Biden administration continues to face backlash from refugee advocates who claim that the government has fallen short in resettling Afghans who assisted the US war effort.

About 120,000 people, including both foreign nationals and Afghan citizens, were evacuated by the US and other western nations last year.

As of July this year, it was reported that more than 74,000 Afghan applicants are still waiting for special immigrant visas to move to the US.

Additional reporting by agencies