10 killed in South Sudan plane crash

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Ten people were killed in a commercial plane crash in South Sudan’s Jonglei state on Tuesday evening, a senior government official said on Wednesday.

Denay Jock Chagor, Jonglei state governor, confirmed that all the passengers including two pilots on board the commercial plane succumbed to fatal injuries.

“It is with great shock to receive the news of the plane crash (HK-4274) of South Supreme Airline that happened on Tuesday, March 2, at around 5:05 p.m., local time at Pieri Airstrip in Uror County,“ Chagor said in a statement issued in Juba.

“Ten people including the two pilots lost their lives. Our prayers are with their families and loved ones.

“On my own behalf and on behalf of the people of Jonglei State, and the nation share this condolence message with the affected families and friends in these hours of grief,’’ he added.

Ayii Duang Ayii, general manager and owner of South Supreme Airlines in Juba, also confirmed the plane crash.

“Upon hearing the news, I called my airport staff to cross-check whether the airline was ours, but I was told that one of our planes that left Juba in the afternoon had not returned.

So, we cannot really tell what went wrong,” Ayii said.

Kur Kuol, director of the Juba International Airport, said the commercial plane crashed immediately after taking off.

Kuol said aviation authorities will investigate the cause of the crash, adding that due to the poor network in the region, it was hard to establish the exact number of casualties.

“We have sent a caravan this morning to go and do a thorough assessment about the exact number of people who were on board,’’ Kuol said.

He said the plane has a maximum carrying capacity of 18 passengers.

Several planes have crashed in South Sudan since 2015, killing more than 100 people. (Xinhua/NAN)

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