44 Killed in Russian plane crash

Moscow (Reuters): 44 people were killed when a passenger plane broke up and caught fire on coming into land in heavy fog in north-western Russia, said the an Emergency Ministry spokeswoman on Tuesday.

Tupolev-134 plane, carrying 43 passengers and nine crews, crashed near a road about 1km (0.6 miles) from a runaway at the Besovets airport outside the northern city of Petrozavodsk about 11.40pm local time (1940 GMT) on Monday.

“The early information is that 44 people were killed and eight people were injured,” said the spokeswoman by the telephone.

“Nine crew on board; officials had earlier said there were five crew on board.”

Among the wreckage of the plane, which crashed about 700km (430 miles) north of Moscow that photographs on the www.lifenews.ru Internet news website showed firemen battling with fires.

At the news site posted a full list of the passengers, said a 10-years-old boy name Anton had survived the crush but no detail that he give about his condition.

The eve of the Paris Air Show which Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin is due to attend where the crash come.

The plane were operated by the private company RusAir was trevelling from Moscow’s Domodedovo airport.

RusAir that specialises in charter flights declined immediate comment.

According to the Interfax news agency, most of the passengers were Russian but a Swedish national was also on the aircraft.

The Tuploev-134 is a Soviet aircraft were the maiden flight was in 1967.

It was unclear when the plane crashed made.

The aircraft’s black boxes have been recovered.

Russsian President Dmitry Medvedev has swapped his Tupolev for a french made executive jet in April critised flaws in domestically built planes and the nation’s poor safety record.

The most high profile Tupolev air disasters in recent times occurred in April 2010 when Polish President Lech Kaczynski’s official Tupolev Tu-154 plane crashed near Smolensk airport in western Russia, killing 96 people including Kaczynski, his wife and a large number of senior officials.- The Star