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Pakistani Military Helicopter Crashes In Balochistan Province, Top Commander Among Six Killed

Pakistani Military Helicopter Crashes In Balochistan Province, Top Commander Among Six Killed

Pakistan's XII Corps Commander Lt. Gen. Sarfraz Ali was among those killed in the crash. He was previously a contender to the post of ISI chief.

Names and photographs of six military personnel killed in the crash released by Pakistani military
Names and photographs of six military personnel killed in the crash released by Pakistani military Twitter/DG ISPR

A Pakistani military helicopter crashed in the restive Balochistan province and a top army commander is among the six killed in the accident.

Besides Lieutenant General Safraz Ali — Commander of XII Corps, the Director-General of Coast Guards Brigadier Amjad was also killed in the accident. 

The other four military personnel killed in the accident have been identified as Major Syed the pilot, Major Talha the co-pilot, Engineer Brigadier Khalid and Chief Naik Mudassir.

Gen. Sarfraz Ali was supervising flood relief operations in Balochistan province. The wreckage of the helicopter was found in Musa Goth, Windar, Lasbela of Balochistan. Major General Babar Iftikhar, head of the media wing of Pakistan's armed forces, said the accident occurred due to bad weather as per initial investigations.

The Pakistan Army Aviation helicopter was on flood relief operations in Lasbela, Balochistan when it lost contact with ATC on Monday. 

Incidentally, Gen. Sarfraz was one of the contenders interviewed by then Prime Minister Imran Khan for the post of DG Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) in October last year, according to the Express Tribune newspaper. He has served as Pakistan's defence attache in the United States.

The helicopter took off from Uthal at 5:10 pm on Monday and was supposed to land in Karachi at 6:05 pm, but it lost contact with the air traffic controller, officials said. 

Pakistan's Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Tuesday had a telephonic conversation with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and apprised him on the latest developments, state-run Associated Press of Pakistan reported. Sharif expressed concern over the incident.

Heavy rains and flash floods have wreaked havoc in Balochistan, claiming 478 lives.

The civil authorities and the Pakistan Army are currently providing relief programmes to the displaced in the province. 

(With PTI inputs)

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