US seeks to boost Afghan airlift operations

Afghan military jet shot down by Uzbek air defences

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Tashkent: The Ministry of Defense of Uzbekistan said on Monday that an Afghan military aircraft was shot down by Uzbek air defense forces and crashed after crossing the border into Uzbekistan.

The Afghan government collapsed on Sunday, and Taliban insurgents took control of the capital, Kabul.

The jet crashed late Sunday in the southernmost Uzbekistan’s southernmost province of Suxundario, adjacent to Afghanistan.

“Uzbekistan s air defence forces prevented an attempt by an Afghan military aircraft to illegally cross Uzbekistan s border,” defence ministry spokesman Bahrom Zulfikorov said.

He did not say how many people were on the plane, nor did he say whether they survived the crash.

The Russian RIA news agency earlier on Monday quoted the Uzbekistan Ministry of Defense as saying that the pilot had been ejected and injured.

On Sunday, Uzbekistan said it had detained 84 Afghan soldiers who had crossed the border seeking medical help.

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