Congo plane crash death toll hits 23, including Russians

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Four more bodies were found Tuesday after a plane ploughed into a residential area of a Republic of Congo city, a mayor said, raising the death toll to 23 including the Russian crew.

The cargo plane slammed into a working-class residential area of Pointe-Noire, the Congo's economic capital and a major Atlantic port, as it was coming in to land on Monday, razing several small houses.

"In addition to the 19 bodies recovered yesterday, we have found four more this morning. That takes the toll to 23 dead," Pointe-Noire mayor Roland Bouiti-Viaudo told AFP.

Around 14 people were also injured when the Antonov ploughed into the Mvou Mvou district, officials said, while residents told AFP that about 20 homes were flattened.

The Trans Air Congo (TAC) plane was carrying four Russians -- two pilots and two mechanics, said national civil aviation agency director general Michel Ambende. Five passengers were also on the plane, police said.

© 2011 AFP

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