257 people killed in Algerian plane crash

Katrina Barker
April 12, 2018

Previous major air accidents in Algeria include an Air Algerie flight that crashed in northern Mali in July 2014 carrying 116 passengers and crew, almost half of them French, en route from Burkina Faso to Algeria. The plane crashed on a farm field and caught fire.

The military says it's not yet sure what caused the crash near its large airport in northern Algeria.

Algeria suffered its deadliest ever air catastrophe Wednesday when a military plane crashed after takeoff, killing 257 people on board, mostly army personnel and their family members.

Shocked onlookers told Algerian television network Ennahar they saw flames coming from the plane's engines before take off, ABC reported.

Rescue workers surrounded the burnt out wreckage searching for survivors.

There was no immediate word on casualties after the plane went down near the Boufarik airbase.

"The president also ordered a prayer on Friday in memory of the victims", it added.

In the south, the Algerian-backed Polisario Front seeking independence for Western Sahara ordered a week of mourning for the 30 dead Sahrawi people from its refugee camps in Tindouf, a statement from the group said. Smoke was still billowing hours after the crash.

Passengers from Western Sahara, a disputed territory annexed by Morocco after Spain withdrew in 1975, were among the fatalities.

The plane had been heading to Tindouf on the border with Western Sahara, Algeria's defence ministry said.

Among the victims of the plane crash were 30 Sahrawis, "the sick and their companions, men, women and children, who had been returning from treatment in Algeria", said the Polisario.

Authorities say they've identified the six people killed in the fiery crash of a small plane on a golf course in a Phoenix suburb shortly it took off from a nearby airport.

According to the plane manufacturer's website, the IL-76, a four-engine plane built in the Soviet Union and then Russian Federation, can transport between 126 and 225 passengers depending on the model and configuration.

In February 2014, 77 troops were killed when a C-130 Hercules aircraft belonging to the Algerian Air Force crashed in Oum El Bouaghi Province, 400 km east of Algiers.

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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