By Servet Gunerigok
WASHINGTON (AA) - Six American service members were killed along with two partner nation service members when a UN helicopter crashed Thursday in Egypt near the Israeli border, according to the Pentagon.
"The Defense Department is deeply saddened by the loss of six U.S. and two partner nation service members in a helicopter crash in the Sinai Peninsula operating with the United Nations Multinational Force and Observers (MFO)," Acting Secretary of Defense Chris Miller said in a statement.
"I extend the Department’s condolences to the families, friends and teammates of these service members," said Miller.
The crash occurred during a routine mission in the vicinity of Sharm el-Sheikh, which also killed a French and a Czech national, according to a MFO statement.
Chief Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said the agency is in close contact with MFO leadership and are standing by to support their investigation.
"We will provide more details as they become available. We will not release the names of those lost until next-of-kin notifications are completed," Hoffman tweeted.