Peacekeeping helicopter crash kills four in Bosnia
Friday, June 20, 2008
The helicopter belonged to Spain and was deployed as part of the EUFOR peacekeeping mission, which Spain and Germany have 250 and 130 soldiers engaged in respectively. It was a German-built Messerschmitt-Bolkow-Blohm BO-105. Spain's defence ministry named the deceased Spaniards as Lieutenant Santiago Hormigo Ledesma and Sergeant Joaquin Lopez Moreno. The Germans have not been named.
The cause of the accident is unknown, but the crash was witnessed by a second military helicopter in the area at the time. They reported seeing smoke from the helicopter but little else because the mountainous and forested terrain impeded their view. It is also known that the aircraft departed Sarajevo on a routine flight and crashed half an hour later after issueing a distress call. An investigation is ongoing.
The bodies were recovered today. The Spaniards were flown home on a C-130 military transport plane, after a short ceremony in which a Spanish general placed medals upon the coffins in the presence of the Spanish ambassador and EUFOR officials.
A EUFOR spokesman said the bodies of the Germans will probably be flown home on Monday.
- "Bodies of 2 Spanish peacekeepers killed in Bosnian helicopter crash transported to Spain" — , June 20, 2008
- "Four EU Peacekeepers Killed in Bosnia Chopper Crash" — , June 19, 2008