Philippine Air Force plane crashes, debris found (Lead)

August 26th, 2008 - 3:41 pm ICT by IANS  

Manila, Aug 26 (DPA) A Philippine Air Force C-130 cargo plane has crashed off a southern coastal village with nine people aboard, officials said Tuesday.Body parts and debris were found in Bukana village on the outskirts of Davao City, 990 km south of Manila, according to Colonel Isagani Silva, an air force group commander.

Silva said the recovered debris included combat boots, a plane wheel and a folder containing the plane’s flight plan.

All the occupants in the plane are feared dead though there was no clear word by the officials about them.

According air force chief Lieutenant General Pedrito Cadungong, the C-130 took off from the international airport in Davao City Monday evening.

It was bound for the eastern city of Iloilo, where it was supposed to arrive about two hours later.

But Cadungog said the air force lost contact with the plane about 10 minutes after it took off.

One fisherman in Bukana village said he saw a “flash of light” from the plane before it plunged into nearby waters.

The plane was supposed to pick up presidential security guards from Iloilo City for transport back to Manila.

President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo was in Iloilo City to attend the wake of an army lieutenant colonel killed in an ambush by Muslim separatist rebels in a southern province last week.

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