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Mar 09,2009
Plane crashes into Lake Victoria
by UPI

KAMPALA, Uganda - All people on board a chartered cargo flight were feared dead after the aircraft crashed Monday near the Ugandan capital of Kampala, officials said.

Four passengers and seven crew members were reported on board the Aerolift Ilyushin IL-76 chartered by Dynacorp on behalf of the African Mission to Somalia, The Aviation Herald reported.

The cargo plane, ferrying tents and water purifiers for Ugandan peacekeepers in Somalia, plunged into Lake Victoria after taking off from Entebbe International Airport, the Russian news agency RIA Novosti reported.

The cause of the crash was not immediately known.

"The aircraft crew comprised Russian nationals ... as well as Ukrainian nationals," and passengers included three officers from Burundi, Ruslan Madiyev, an adviser to Russia's ambassador to Uganda, told RIA Novosti. "They all died."

A source told Xinhua, China (OTCBB:XHUA)'s state-run news agency, the plane caught fire during the takeoff and fell into Lake Victoria.

Ugandan officials said the Entebbe airport and Uganda People's Defense Force's Marine Search and Rescue teams went to where the plane crashed and sank. Salvage efforts were under way.

© 2009 United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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