Russian Passenger Plane Crashes Near Moscow, Killing 71

Will Racke | Immigration and Foreign Policy Reporter

A Russian passenger jet crashed near Moscow on Sunday, killing all 71 people aboard, according to Russia’s emergency management agency.

The Saratov Airlines An-148 regional jet was traveling from Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport to the Russian city of Orsk, about 1,000 miles to the southeast. Minutes after take-off, the plane slipped from radar coverage and crashed in the Ramenskoye area about 25 miles from the airport.

All 65 passengers and six crew members were killed in the crash, reports Russian state media TASS, citing Russia’s Ministry of Transport. The 7-year-old Anotov An-148 plane went down just 5 minutes after takeoff, according to the flight tracking service Flightradar24.

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Russian airlines have suffered two major plane crashes in recent years. A Tu-154 military transport crashed into the Black Sea in 2016, killing all 92 people aboard in a disaster blamed on pilot error. A Russian Airbus A321 carrying tourists exploded after taking off from Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula in 2015. All 224 people aboard were killed in the explosion, which was caused by a bomb placed in the plane by Islamic State terrorists.

It was not immediately clear what caused the crash on Sunday. Investigators are looking into several possible reasons, including weather conditions and pilot error, transportation officials said.

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