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Soldier killed in helicopter crash

Staff Reporter

ONE Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) officer died while three others escaped with injuries after an army helicopter crashed in Sehlabathebe in the Qacha’s Nek district on Thursday.

Two of the three injured officers were crew members while the other is an infantry soldier.

The LDF public affairs office confirmed the accident in a statement saying the aircraft was on its way from various army deployment areas to Maseru.

This is the second crash involving LDF aircraft after another LDF helicopter crashed in Thaba Putsoa in the Maseru district killing four soldiers in April last year.

Although the details of the recent crash are still sketchy, the LDF said investigations were underway to establish the cause of the accident.

“The LDF Public Affairs Office hereby informs the Basotho nation about the LDF aircraft crash in the area of Sehlabathebe, Qacha’s Nek on Thursday morning on 20 December 2018,” part of the LDF statement reads.

“Initial reports indicate that aboard the helicopter were four members of the LDF – two flight crew and two infantry soldiers – and it was on its way from various LDF deployment areas in the district of Qacha’s Nek to Maseru. The helicopter had been assigned to facilitate transportation of personnel and supply of food rations to the soldiers deployed in the areas which are highly inaccessible by road.

“In this incident, one LDF member lost his life while two flight crew and one infantry soldier sustained injuries and were rushed to a nearby clinic for medical treatment. The medical evacuation has already been made and the injured personnel are now receiving treatment at the Queen Mamohato Memorial Hospital in Maseru. LDF PAO will once again inform the nation once the investigation into this accident have been completed,” the LDF further stated.

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