At least 11 Turkish soldiers, including a senior officer, were martyred and two others injured as a military helicopter crashed in eastern Turkey on Thursday, Turkey's National Defense Ministry said.
The contact with the Cougar-type military helicopter, which took off from the eastern Bingol province for the Tatvan district of Bitlis at 1.55 p.m. local time [1055GMT], was lost at 2.25 p.m. [1125GMT
Davut Bikec, an eyewitness from the Cekmece village of Tatvan district, said the crash happened around 2.30 p.m. local time (1130GMT).
"We did not realize that the helicopter crashed […] After a while, my children said that "a helicopter has crashed", Bikec added.
In the early hours on Friday, military personnel and Turkish Emergency and Disaster Department (AFAD) staff arrived at the crash site near the village of Cekmece in the Tatvan district of Bitlis province.
Tight security measures were put in place around the village perimeter, with military personnel blocking entry to the site except for the investigating team.
According to the reports, a detailed investigation is ongoing. It was also stated that the wreckage would be removed from the region after the investigation completed.