Kabul, January 6 (RHC)-- One U.S. soldier has been killed and two others wounded during a special operations mission in southern Afghanistan, the Pentagon said. The U.S. Defense Department did not name the casualties and only confirmed that the incident took place near the city of Marjah in Helmand Province, which has long been a stronghold of the Taliban.
Officials said that an American "medevac" team, called in to recover casualties, also came under mortar and small-arms fire. It was not immediately clear if the helicopter had been attacked or whether any casualties were suffered during transport.
A Taliban spokesman said Tuesday the militant group had shot down an American transport helicopter in Helmand. A U.S. military official in Afghanistan, however, said the helicopter had landed, but said it had experienced "mechanical malfunctions."
Afghan forces, aided by U.S. special forces, have been fighting the Taliban in Marjah for weeks. Late last year, the Taliban launched a major offensive to seize key districts in Helmand.
While U.S.-led NATO troops left Afghanistan at the end of 2014, some 12,000 foreign forces remain in the country to help Afghan security forces.
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