KABUL (AFP) - An Azerbaijani cargo plane carrying supplies for the NATO mission in Afghanistan crashed into treacherous mountains killing all nine crew on board outside the Afghan capital Kabul, officials said Wednesday. The plane took off from Baku at 9:26 pm Tuesday (1626 GMT) with 18 tons of supplies for the US-led mission and crashed as it tried to land at Bagram air base to the north of Kabul, officials said. "Our teams have recovered the wreckage of the plane. Unfortunately all nine crew members have been killed, there are no survivors," said Afghan transport ministry spokesman Nangyalai Qalatwal. He said authorities were alerted to the crash by locals who saw a huge ball of fire erupt as the plane hit the mountains at an altitude of 12,500 feet (3,800 metres). "The bodies have been burnt and are unidentifiable," he said. "The plane has been completely destroyed and the debris is spread over a large area." The Azerbaijani embassy in Pakistan said the nine crew were from Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan, and that the plane was operated by private Azerbaijani airline Silk Way. There were no reports of bad weather or fighting in the area and it was not yet clear why the plane crashed into the mountainside, Qalatwal said. He said Afghan authorities had requested NATO's help in recovering the black box from the plane to help determine the cause of the crash. He said the plane was carrying logistics for the US-led NATO mission when it went down in the Shakar Dara mountains, around 70 kilometres (40 miles) north of Kabul. A spokesman for NATO's International Security Assistance Force confirmed it was a military-contracted flight. The Azerbaijani Civil Aviation Administration said contact with the IL-76 was lost at 1:40 am local time (2110 GMT Tuesday), but that the crew had not reported any emergency. "A flight controller at Kabul airport said that they observed a flash of light approximately 25 kilometres (15 miles) from the airport, at a four-kilometre altitude," it said. "Before the loss of contact, the crew did not report any emergency in the plane. It is assumed that the plane collided with an unknown object in the air," the statement added, in a possible reference to the mountains. ISAF spokesman Major Tim James said there were no reports of combat in the area at the time of the crash. The US-led NATO force backs Afghan government forces in fighting a 10-year Taliban insurgency that has been concentrated in the east and south. Azerbaijani civil aviation authorities said there were no technical problems with the plane before it took off for Afghanistan, adding that it was manufactured in 2005 and last had a full inspection in February. Aviation disasters are relatively rare in Afghanistan, where travel by road through vast and remote terrain is made more hazardous by the Taliban insurgency. Last October, a cargo plane carrying goods on behalf of ISAF, crashed into mountains just outside the Afghan capital, killing all eight crew on board. In May 2010, an Afghan commercial Pamir Airways passenger plane carrying 43 people also crashed in mountains outside Kabul, killing all on board. In February 2005, a Boeing 737 operated by private company Kam Air crashed in the mountains on the outskirts of Kabul during heavy snow. There were no survivors among the 104 people on board, including two dozen foreigners.