Happening Now!! Two (2) Israelis among 157 killed in Ethiopian Airlines plane crash




Ethiopian Airlines says pilot of brand-new Boeing 737 reported 'difficulties', asked to turn back
An Ethiopian Airlines flight carrying 149 passengers and eight crew members crashed Sunday six minutes after taking off from Addis Ababa en route to Nairobi, killing all on board including two Israelis.

The plane, a brand new Boeing 737 passenger jet, took off from Addis Ababa's Bole International Airport at 8:38 a.m. local time (0638 GMT) on a regularly scheduled flight between the Ethiopian and Kenyan capitals and "lost contact" just six minutes later.

There was no immediate indication as to what caused the crash. The airline's CEO said that the pilot of the crashed plane had reported "difficulties" shortly after takeoff and requested permission to turn back.

The airline confirmed that there were no survivors, and that the victims included foreign nationals from over 32 countries.
Two Israelis were among the dead, which also included 32 Kenyans; 18 Canadians; nine Ethiopians; eight each from China, the United States and Italy; seven each from France and Britain; six from Egypt; five from the Netherlands; four each from India and Slovakia; and one Irish citizen.

"I came here to the Foreign Ministry to closely monitor reports from Ethiopia," Israel's prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a video outside the emergency situation room where he had arrived earlier to ascertain whether there were any Israeli victims.

"Unfortunately our ambassador in Ethiopia told us that two Israelis were killed in the plane crash," he continued, "our hearts are with the families."

The Ethiopian Prime Minister's office tweeted "condolences to the families of those that have lost their loved ones."
Israel has a sizeable Ethiopian population numbering around 140,000 people, including more than 50,000 born in the Jewish state.

According to reports, the jetliner was a brand new Boeing 737 that had joined the airline's fleet only four months ago.

The US aerospace giant that made the plane said in a statement that it was "deeply saddened" by the accident and would provide technical assistance to find out why its aircraft crashed.

"Boeing is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of the passengers and crew on Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302, a 737 MAX 8 airplane," the company said in a statement.
"A Boeing technical team is prepared to provide technical assistance at the request and under the direction of the US National Transportation Safety Board."

The Boeing 737-800MAX is the same type of plane as the Indonesian Lion Air jet that crashed last October, 13 minutes after takeoff from Jakarta, killing all 189 people on board.

The Boeing came down near the village of Tulu Fara outside Bishoftu leaving a massive crater in the ground with belongings and airplane parts scattered widely.

Police and troops were on the scene, as well as a crash investigation team from Ethiopia's civil aviation agency. Rescue crews were retrieving human remains from the wreckage.

African Union commission chief Moussa Faki Mahamat said he had learnt of the crash "with utter shock and immense sadness.

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta said he was "saddened" by the news, adding: "My prayers go to all the families and associates of those on board."

The crash is the latest in a string of high-profile aviation incidents reported in the past 24-hours.

On Saturday, 30 passengers aboard a Turkish Airlines flight from Istanbul to New York were injured after the plane hit severe turbulence before landing safely.

Earlier in the day, a passenger plane operated by Canada's Air Transat made an emergency landing at another New York area airport -- in Newark, New Jersey -- after smoke was detected in the cargo hold. No one was injured in the incident.

The last major accident involving an Ethiopian Airlines passenger plane was a Boeing 737-800 that exploded after taking off from Lebanon in 2010, killing 83 passengers and seven crew.

I24news

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