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Saturday, December 24, 2016
Russian military plane headed to Syria crashes with 91 aboard
A Russian Tu-154 aircraft with 91 people aboard, including a famed military band on the way to Syria, disappeared Sunday over the Black Sea shortly after takeoff from the resort town of Sochi, the Defense Ministry said.
Russian media reports said the plane disappeared over the sea a few minutes after takeoff. The Russian Defense Ministry says rescuers have found fragments of the plane at a distance of about 1.5 kilometers (less than a mile) from shore at a depth of 50-70 meters.
The plane had departed at 5:40 am local time (0240 GMT) from Adler, south of the Black Sea resort city of Sochi, and was conducting a routine flight to Russia’s Hmeimim airbase outside the coastal Syrian city of Latakia, the ministry said.
The ministry said the plane was carrying Russian servicemen as well as members of the Alexandrov Ensemble, the army’s official musical group, who were headed to Syria to participate in New Year celebrations at the base. There were nine members of the media on board, the ministry said. (Read More)