Pakistan passenger plane crashes in Karachi, killing all aboard

2020-05-22 21:12:46CGTN Editor : Jing Yuxin ECNS App Download

A passenger plane operated by Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) crashed in the southern Pakistani port city of Karachi on Friday afternoon, killing all passengers and crew on board, the city's mayor confirmed.

The state carrier said the flight, PK 8303, had crashed with 99 passengers and eight crew members on board, though civil aviation officials said the total for both may be 99.

The Chinese embassy in Pakistan said no Chinese nationals were on board.

The aircraft, a 15-year-old Airbus A320, went down near a residential area in Karachi. It was on its way from the city of Lahore to Karachi when the incident happened.

The PIA flight smashed into a residential area, with clouds of thick black smoke billowing from the site, according to images circulated on social media.

Several buildings and cars were also damaged

Following the report of the crash, the Pakistan military said security forces had been deployed to the area and helicopters were being used to survey the damage and help rescue operations.

Technical fault

According to a media report, a technical fault might have led to the tragedy.

"The last we heard from the pilot was that he has some technical problem," PIA spokesman Abdullah H. Khan said in a video statement.

It appeared the plane was unable to open its wheels due to a technical fault prior to landing, a senior civil aviation official told Reuters, adding it was too early to determine the cause.

Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan promised an inquiry into the incident and said he had contacted the PIA's chief executive Arshad Malik who has headed to the crash site.

"Shocked & saddened by the PIA crash ... Immediate inquiry will be instituted. Prayers & condolences go to families of the deceased," Khan wrote on Twitter.


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