The Pentagon denied on Tuesday an Iranian news report that a U.S. military aircraft had violated Iranian territory and had been forced to land in Iran, saying all American planes were accounted for. "All aircraft in the region are accounted for and we have no reports of any aircraft landing in Iran," Lt. Col. Patrick Ryder told reporters.
"I haven't heard anything like that," said Pentagon Bryan Whitman, according to Reuters.
The Iran news agency reported earlier that a U.S. warplane had violated Iranian territory and had been forced to land in Iran. Later, Iran's state television said the aircraft carrying the soldiers was a non-American civilian plane. "This plane was not a military plane and did not belong to the United States," an unnamed official was quoted as saying by the website of the television's Arabic-language Al-Alam channel. "But a few US military soldiers were in the plane," he official added.
The plane was forced to land in Iran on Sunday and allowed to fly to Afghanistan on Monday, the website added.