Middle East

13 Turkish troops die in helicopter crash near Iraq border

Turkey's military says 13 soldiers have died in a helicopter crash the border with Iraq.

A military statement said the AS532 Cougar helicopter crashed Wednesday shortly after taking off from a base in the region of Senoba in Sirnak province.

It said initial information indicated that the helicopter hit a high-voltage transmission line.

The governor's office for the province of Sirnak said the Cougar type helicopter crashed near the town of Uludere on Wednesday, three minutes after taking off.

Turkish media reports said the helicopter was carrying about a dozen officers and soldiers.

The crash occurred as Turkish troops are engaged in operations against Kurdish militants in a mountainous region of Sirnak province.