Three Army Officers and three soldiers were martyred including two other UN Peacekeepers from Russia and Serbia in a helicopter crash in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) on Tuesday.

Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) released a statement that stated, “Pakistan Aviation Unit is deployed in UN Mission Congo on peacekeeping duties since 2011. On Mar 29, 22 while undertaking a reconnaissance mission in Congo, 1 PUMA Helicopter crashed.”

According to the mission, “the causes of this disappearance are not yet known. Research is ongoing.”


ISPR released the names of the martyred who are Lt Col Asif Ali Awan, (Pilot), Maj Saad Nomani (Co-Pilot), Maj Faizan Ali, ​​N/Sub Sami Ullah Khan (Flight Engineer), Havaldar Muhammad Ismail (Crew Chief), and L/Hav Muhamad Jamil (Gunner).

Earlier on Tuesday, the UN Stabilisation Mission in DR Congo (MONUSCO) tweeted that they had ‘lost contact’ with one of its helicopters in which eight UN peacekeepers were on board. They were on a reconnaissance mission in the area of Tshanzu, southeast of Rutshuru in North Kivu Province, an area which has been the scene of recent fighting between government troops and rebel group M23.

Prime Minister Imran Khan also expressed his “deep sense of shock and grief”, the Prime Minister’s office stated.