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Helicopter shot down; seven killed

Kabul – A civilian helicopter ferrying humanitarian aid was shot down in a southern Afghan province where fighting with the Taliban is raging, killing all six Ukrainian crew members and a child on the ground, officials said.

Two U.S. Marines and an Italian soldier died in the latest clashes.

The transport helicopter crashed in flames Tuesday in the Sangin district of Helmand province, the center of Afghanistan’s opium poppy cultivation where thousands of Marines are conducting their biggest offensive since the hardline Islamic movement was ousted from power in 2001.

NATO officials in Kabul said the cause of the crash was under investigation.

Toppled leader backs marches

Guatemala City – Ousted Honduran President Manuel Zelaya said Tuesday that the Honduran people “have the right to insurrection” against the interim government that forced him out of the country.

The remarks appeared to pave the way for a further escalation of the conflict in Honduras, where Zelaya’s supporters have staged massive marches demanding his return and one person has already been killed in clashes between demonstrators and soldiers.

Zelaya was toppled by a military-backed coup June 28 and flown out of the country. He is recognized by virtually all foreign governments.


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