Eleven dead in Russian airliner crash: ministry

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A Russian regional airliner crashed and exploded into a fireball while trying to land in eastern Siberia on Monday, killing 11 of the 15 people aboard, the emergency situations ministry said.

The An-24 aircraft flying from Krasnoyarsk crashed at 1740 GMT off the edge of the runway while attempting to land at the airport of the city of Igarka, the ministry said.

"Eleven people including one child were killed," said a spokeswoman for the local branch of the emergency ministry, quoted by Interfax news agency.

Three pilots and a passenger were pulled alive from the wreckage and were hospitalised suffering from burns and bruising, according to the federal air transport agency.

An earlier toll from the ministry said that eight had survived the crash.

Eleven passengers and four crew were on board the turboprop aircraft capable of carrying up to 44 passengers.

Firefighters and rescue workers had arrived at the crash site.

The reason for the crash was not immediately known, but a spokesman for the air transport agency said the plane veered off the right before crashing around 700 metres (yards) from the runway.

© 2010 AFP

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