Plane crash kills 22 in Kazakhstan
A passenger plane crashed in thick fog near Kazakhstan's commercial capital of Almaty on Tuesday, killing all 22 people on board, an emergency services official said.
The Canadian-built Bombardier Challenger CRJ-200 was en route from the city of Kokshetau in northern Kazakhstan to Almaty in the southeast when it crashed near the village of Kyzyl Tu, Deputy Almaty Mayor Maulen Mukashev said.
He told reporters near the scene that the plane belonged to private Kazakh airline SCAT, which operates extensive domestic services and some international flights.
"There was no fire, no explosion. The plane just plunged to the earth," Yuri Ilyin, deputy head of the city's emergencies department, told Reuters near the scene.
Ilyin put the death toll at 22.
Almaty and the surrounding area were veiled in thick fog on Tuesday.
"The preliminary cause of the accident is bad weather," Mukashev said. "Not a single part of the plane was left intact after it came down."
It was the second plane crash in the Central Asian country and former Soviet republic in just a over a month.
On Dec 25, a military transport airplane crashed in bad weather near the southern Kazakh city of Shymkent, killing all 27 people on board.
Prosecutors have said that a fatal combination of technical problems, bad weather and human errors caused that accident.
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