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A Blackhawk helicopter like the one that crashed (file) (epa) August 22, 2007 -- The U.S. military says a helicopter crashed today in northern Iraq, killing all 14 U.S. soldiers aboard.

The military says initial indications show the aircraft experienced a mechanical problem during a nighttime operation. It says there are no indications it was brought down by hostile fire.

It's the deadliest such crash since January 2005, when a U.S. transport helicopter went down in a sandstorm in western Iraq, killing 31 U.S. troops.

The deaths raised to at least 3,721 members of the U.S. military who have died since the Iraq war started in March 2003.

Also today, at least 20 people were reported killed when a suicide bomber rammed a fuel tanker into the front gates of an Iraqi police station.

At least 40 others are said to have been wounded in the blast in Bayji, 180 kilometers north of Baghdad.

(Reuters, AP, AFP)
RFE/RL Iraq Report


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