Coalition Chopper Shot Down in Afghanistan

A helicopter from the U.S.-led coalition was shot down south of the Afghan capital Wednesday, the coalition said. No one was seriously injured, it said.

Small-arms fire downed the chopper in Kherwar district of Logar province, a coalition statement said. The pilots were able to land the aircraft and evacuate everyone on board before it caught fire, it said.

The coalition provided no other details.

Logar police chief Mohammed Mustafa Khan said reports from his officers in the remote district suggested Taliban militants shot down the helicopter with a rocket-propelled grenade. He had no other information.

Helicopter crashes have been among the deadliest incidents for international troops in Afghanistan.

Most recently, seven soldiers died when a Chinook helicopter was shot down during an air assault in the southern province of Helmand in May 2007.

However, mechanical failure and accidents are just as great a risk as enemy fire in Afghanistan's craggy mountains and dust-filled deserts.

Wednesday's incident comes amid a surge in fighting between insurgents and security forces across the southern half of Afghanistan, including in provinces adjacent to the capital, Kabul.