Update 5.04pm: There are no survivors from a passenger plane that crashed near Moscow, Russia’s transport minister has said.
Maxim Sololov said that “judging by everything, no-one has survived this crash” after the An-148 regional jet went down a few minutes after takeoff today. The plane disappeared from radar screens shortly after taking off from Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport.
News reports said 71 people – 65 passengers and six crew – were on board the plane heading for the city of Orsk, about 1,000 miles south-east of Moscow. Wreckage was found in the Ramenskoye area about 25 miles from the airport.
It was unclear if there were any casualties among people on the ground at the crash site. The Interfax news agency quoted Sergei Sheremetsinsky, a spokesman for the regional governor, as saying that all passengers were residents of the Orenburg region. Russia’s Investigative Committee said all possible crash causes were being looked into.
President Vladimir Putin postponed a planned trip to Sochi to closely monitor the investigation.
He was due to meet Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas on Monday in the Black Sea resort where the president has an official residence.
Instead, Mr Abbas will meet Mr Putin in Moscow in the latter part of Monday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said. Russian media said the jet belonged to Saratov Airlines.
Tass said the plane had first flown in 2010, with a two-year break because of a shortage of parts.
It was ordered by Rossiya Airlines, a subsidiary of Aeroflot, but was put into storage during 2015-2017 because of a lack of parts.
Tass reported that it re-entered service for Saratov Airlines in February 2017.
The jet was developed by Ukraine’s Antonov company in the early 2000s, and was manufactured in both Ukraine and Russia.
Update 1.54pm: A passenger plane has crashed near Moscow and fragments of it have been found, Russia’s Emergencies Ministry has said. The An-148 regional jet disappeared from radar screens shortly after takeoff from Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport this afternoon.
News reports said 71 people – 65 passengers and six crew – were on board the plane heading for the city of Orsk, about 1,000 miles south-east of Moscow.
The Tass news agency said the plane fragments were found in the Ramenskoye area about 25 miles from the airport. Russian media said the jet belonged to Saratov Airlines.