Skip to main content

U.S. military plane crashes in Kyrgyzstan

From Clare Sebastian, CNN
updated 3:23 PM EDT, Fri May 3, 2013
A KC-135 tanker flies over Chicago in 2004.
A KC-135 tanker flies over Chicago in 2004.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The status of the three crew members is unknown, the U.S. 376th Air Expeditionary Wing says
  • Manas is a supply hub for U.S. forces in Afghanistan
  • The United States says the "status of the crew is unknown"
  • The crash took place in a mountainous region

Moscow (CNN) -- An American military refueling plane took off and crashed in Kyrgyzstan on Friday, Kyrgyz and U.S. officials said.

"The status of the three crew members is unknown," the U.S. 376th Air Expeditionary Wing said in a news release.

The plane was a U.S. Air Force KC-135 tanker aircraft, according to the expeditionary wing's Public Affairs Transit Center at Manas, near Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. The crew and aircraft are assigned to the transit center.

The Manas transit center is a U.S. airbase that serves as a supply hub for American forces in Afghanistan. It is located at the Manas airport.

The plane crashed in a mountainous area between Chorgolu and Cholok-Aryk -- two villages in the Chuysky region of northern Kyrgyzstan, and a fire crew and three ambulances responded, Elmira Shyrypova, at the Kyrgyz Emergencies Ministry press office.

The transit center said investigators are determining the cause of the crash and emergency responders were on the scene

Kyrgyz Prime Minister Jantoro Satybaldiev held an emergency meeting in connection with the crash, state media reported.

Sharshenaliev said debris from the crash was scattered over an area of about a kilometer radius. He said witnesses calling in on a hotline said they saw a parachute when the plane was falling. Others said they saw an explosion and the plane was broken in half.

CNN's Yousuf Basil and Barbara Starr contributed to this report

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 9:54 PM EST, Tue December 23, 2014
A decade on from devastating 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, the Red Cross' Matthias Schmale says that the lessons learned have made us safer.
updated 7:24 PM EST, Tue December 23, 2014
As soon as word broke that "The Interview" will hit some theaters, celebrations erupted across social media -- including from the stars of the film.
updated 1:44 PM EST, Tue December 23, 2014
Did a rogue hacker -- or the U.S. government -- cut the cord for the regime's Internet?
updated 8:06 PM EST, Tue December 23, 2014
Monaco's newborn royals, Princess Gabriella and Crown Prince Jacques Honore Rainier, posed for their first official photos with their parents.
updated 12:06 PM EST, Tue December 23, 2014
Tim Berners-Lee, the man credited with inventing the world wide web, gives a speech on April 18, 2012 in Lyon, central France, during the World Wide Web 2012 international conference on April 18, 2012 in Lyon.
What's next for the Internet? Acclaimed scientist Sir Tim Berners-Lee shares his insights.
updated 3:22 AM EST, Tue December 23, 2014
The United States and North Korea have long been locked in a bitter cycle of escalating and deescalating tensions. But the current cyber conflict may be especially hard to predict.
updated 4:00 PM EST, Mon December 22, 2014
A chilling video shows Boko Haram executing dozens of non-Muslims.
updated 6:34 AM EST, Mon December 22, 2014
New planes, new flight tests ... but will we get cheaper airfares?
updated 12:46 PM EST, Sun December 21, 2014
The killing of two cops could not have happened at a worse time for a city embroiled in a public battle over police-community relations, Errol Louis says.
updated 9:51 PM EST, Sun December 21, 2014
The gateway to Japan's capital, Tokyo Station, is celebrating its centennial this month -- and it has never looked better.
updated 11:21 AM EST, Sat December 20, 2014
Unicef has warned that more than 1.7 million children in conflict-torn areas of eastern Ukraine face an "extremely serious" situation.
updated 12:01 PM EST, Mon December 22, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT