A plane carrying aid supplies for use in the fight against the coronavirus crashed in Somalia on Monday, killing all six people on board, the Somali transport minister said.
The Somali authorities say a plane carrying coronavirus aid supplies has crashed, killing the six people on board.
The Six people include – the pilot, copilot, flight engineer and a trainee pilot, as well as two people working for the airline – were onboard, said Transport Minister Mohamed Salad. Five bodies were recovered so far, he said.
The aircraft was owned by African Airways and was ferrying supplies for use in the fight against coronavirus.
It left the capital Mogadishu and briefly stopped in the city of Baidoa before continuing to the town of Bardale, in the southern Bay region, where it crashed a short distance from the airport.
The cause of the Monday evening incident is not known.
The South-West State Minister of Transport Hassan Hussein Mohamed told the BBC that those who died included Somali and Kenyan nationals.
Abdirashid Abdullahi Mohamed, Somalia’s former minister of defence, said a witness told him the plane made an initial attempt to land, swung around again because of wildlife on the airfield, and then appeared to be shot on one wing on its second approach.
He provided photographs showing the plane in flames, pieces of it scattered over a small area, and its tail intact, and provided a passenger list with six names.
Speculation in local media also was that the crash was caused by a missile from Ethiopian troops stationed in the area.
Ethiopian authorities were not available for comment.
Ethiopian, Somalian, and African Union forces operate in the area because of the threat posed by the Islamist militant group al-Shabaab.
The group, which is affiliated with the international al-Qaeda terrorist network, wants to establish an Islamist state in Somalia.