Camp Lejeune helicopter crashes in waters near Africa

GULF OF ADEN - A Camp Lejeune helicopter carrying 25 people crashed Monday in the Gulf of Aden, but all aboard were rescued, the Navy said.

The 17 Marines and eight Navy sailors were recovered and were on board the USS Mesa Verde, and some who sustained minor injuries were treated on the ship.

The CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter --assigned to the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit at Camp Lejeune-- crashed at about 2 p.m GMT (10 a.m. EST) Monday as it attempted to land on the ship, which has a big landing deck on the back, according to the Navy.

The Navy said the crash was not the result of hostile activity, but the aircraft was transferring troops back to the ship from training in nearby Djibouti in Africa.

The Navy and Marine Corps are investigating the cause of the crash.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel ordered the USS Mesa Verde into the Persian Gulf earlier this summer as concern grew over the Islamic State terrorist group's advance on Iraq's capital, Baghdad.

The ship --an amphibious transport dock ship based at Norfolk, Va.-- carries and lands Marines and other troops, their equipment and supplies, aided by helicopters and vertical takeoff and landing aircraft.

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