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11/27/06

Iran: 36 Killed In Military Plane Crash in Tehran

An IRGC Antonov-74 plane heading towards the southern Iranian city of Shiraz on a military mission on Monday morning crashed at Tehran International Mehrabad Airport at 07:20 hours local time (0350 GMT).

According to IRGC Commander Major General Yahya Rahim Safavi, based on initial information obtained and investigation carried out by IRGC experts, one of the plane's engines was not functioning at the time of take-off.

"The plane may probably have caught fire after one of its wings, which store fuel, hit an object on the runway," he told reporters.

He said the cause of crash has yet to be determined and that the IRGC has dispatched a team to conduct a thorough investigation into the cause of the crash.

Two wounded passengers of crashed plane under medical treatment

According to the officials in charge, in the plane crash at Tehran International Mehrabad Airport on Monday, in addition to those who lost their lives, three were wounded.

Two of the wounded were taken to Baqiatollah (AS) Hospital and the third one, who was seriously injured, passed away.

The physician of Qadr First Air Base, Dr. Se'adatollah Hadi, told IRNA this afternoon that the two wounded passengers of the crashed plan, Shahram Rouzbehi and Ali Jahan are now being treated.

"Three of the passengers on board of Antonov-74 belonging to the Islamic Revolution's Guards Corps (IRGC) were wounded in the plane crash. One of them, Nader Imani Saber, passed away as they were being carried to hospital.

"Upon contact with Baqiatollah (AS) Hospital, where the two injured passengers are being treated, we were informed that Behrouzi and Jahan were burned up to 75 and 45 percent respectively.

For his part, Deputy head of Baqiatollah (AS) Hospital, Dr. Ahmad Ahmadi, speaking to IRNA, confirmed that two of the wounded are alive, adding that one of them is in a critical condition.

This is while, one of the Air Force commanders, Colonel Amir Houshang Rahnemaei declared the names of 38 victims of the plane crash, including the two wounded, as specified above.

Iran's civil and military fleet is made up of ancient aircraft. Most are considered to be in poor condition due to their age and lack of maintenance.

U.S. sanctions restrict the Iranian government from buying American planes or European Airbus aircraft that include a significant number of U.S. parts.

(IRNA, ISNA, VOA)

... Payvand News - 11/27/06 ... --



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