44 killed in Russia plane crashJune 21st, 2011 - 8:19 am ICT by IANS
Moscow, June 21 (IANS/RIA Novosti) At least 44 people were killed when a passenger aircraft crash landed in northern Russia late Monday night, officials said Tuesday.
Eight other people were injured when the Tu-134 plane met with the accident in Karelia region, said a spokesman for the emergencies ministry.
The plane en route from Moscow to Petrozavodsk crash landed on a highway one kilometre away from the airport, where it was scheduled to land at 00.04 a.m. Moscow time Tuesday (2004 GMT Monday). The plane fell apart and burst into flames on landing.
The spokesman said there were 52 people on board.
Valentina Ulich, health and social development minister of Karelia, said that among the killed in the crash was one foreigner from Sweden.
Various crash versions are being studied at the moment including a human factor, said Russian Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin. A criminal case into the crash has been launched.
Rescuers working at the crash site have found both flight recorders from the aircraft.
An emergencies ministry’s Il-76 aircraft with rescuers and psychologists on board has taken off from Moscow.
The Tu-134 aircraft - launched in 1967 - is the most widely used in Russia and the erstwhile Soviet Union regions.
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