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Four Killed, Two Seriously Wounded In Plane Crash In Kazakhstan

By RFE/RL's Kazakh Service March 13, 2021

Four people were killed and two others seriously wounded when a military plane crashed and caught fire while trying to land in Kazakhstan's largest city, Almaty.

The Emergency Situations Ministry said the two survivors were hospitalized and their condition was "extremely" serious.

The ministry said the AN-26 aircraft, carrying six passengers, was travelling to Almaty from the capital Nur-Sultan when it disappeared from radar screens around 5:20 p.m. local time on March 13.

The plane caught fire after it crashed at Almaty Airport, the ministry said.

Almaty Airport said in a statement that "the plane crashed at the end of the runway," although it did not offer an explanation for the accident.

The plane struck the ground near the village of Kyzyltu, near Almaty.

Video footage showed rows of fire trucks, police vehicles, and ambulances at the crash site.


Kazakh President Qasym-Zhomart Toqaev expressed his condolences to the families of the victims.

"On my orders, work has begun to clarify the causes of the plane crash," Toqaev said on Twitter. "Such incidents should not be repeated."

Kazakhstan's National Security Committee said it owned the plane.

The AN-26 is a civilian and military transport aircraft that was produced in the Soviet Union until 1986. Hundreds have remained in service in former Soviet republics and other countries around the world.

The March 13 crash was the latest accident to hit the Central Asian nation's aviation industry.

In December 2019, 12 of the 98 passengers and crew aboard a Fokker 100 aircraft on a flight operated by Kazakh airline Bek Air crashed near Almaty Airport.

The plane crashed while trying to take off from the Almaty airport en route to Nur-Sultan.

Authorities concluded that the most likely factor for the crash was an accumulation of ice on the plane's wings.

With reporting by Reuters and AFP

Source: https://www.rferl.org/a/military-plane -crashes-on-approach-to-kazakh- airport/31149248.html

Copyright (c) 2021. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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