British Military Transport Plane Crashes Near Baghdad
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - A British military transport plane crashed northwest of Baghdad Sunday, the British Ministry of Defense said.
No details have yet been established about what caused the C-130 Hercules transport plane to come down or the extent of any casualties.
"An RAF C-130 Hercules crashed at around 1725 local time on 30 January some 30 kilometers northwest of Baghdad," a statement from the ministry in London said.
"The cause of the crash, and the extent of casualties among personnel on board are not yet known. Further details will be promulgated as soon as possible."
U.S. officials said the plane crashed near the Iraqi capital, and media reports said the aircraft was on its way to the city of Balad from Baghdad when it crashed.
Hercules transport planes can carry military equipment or large numbers of passengers, accommodating up to 92 troops, 64 paratroops or several freight pallets.
British and U.S. troops were helping Iraqi forces ensure security Sunday as Iraqis voted in the first national election since the U.S.-led invasion in March 2003.
Insurgents opposed to the election had threatened to kill anyone who tried to vote, and there were at least nine suicide bomb attacks in Baghdad.
Last Wednesday, 30 U.S. marines and one sailor were killed when an American military helicopter crashed close to the Jordanian border in the deadliest single incident for American troops since they invaded Iraq 22 months ago.