Pak authorities identify remains of 95 people died in crash
Last Updated: Friday, July 30, 2010, 21:41
Islamabad: Pakistani authorities identified the remains of 95 people who died in the crash of the Airblue airliner in hills near the federal capital even as investigators intensified their search for the aircraft's black box in the hope that it would offer vital clues about the accident.

Interior Minister Rehman Malik told the Senate or upper house of parliament that the remains of 95 of the 152 people who died in the crash in the Margalla Hills on Wednesday had been identified.

The remains of 78 victims had been handed over to their relatives.

The remaining bodies were being handed over under a laid down "standard operating procedure", Malik said while responding to points raised by lawmakers.

They said the families of victims had complained about inadequate arrangements being made to accommodate them and the looting of belongings at the crash site.

The search operation at the thickly forested and inaccessible crash site has been hampered by bad weather and heavy rains.

Malik said all resources had been deployed to recover bodies, belongings and the black box or flight data recorder.

Investigators spent a third day today searching for the black box of the Airbus A321 aircraft that crashed while on flight from the southern city of Karachi.

"We have recovered the remains of all the bodies. Now our focus is on the investigation and we are searching for any clue which can help us," Deputy Inspector General of Police Bin Yamin said.

Aviation experts and other investigators are focusing on the black box as it is expected to provide valuable clues as to why the 10-year-old aircraft, which was piloted by a captain with 35 years of experience, came down.

A five-member French team representing Airbus has reached Islamabad and joined experts of the Civil Aviation Authority in the investigation.

CAA spokesman Pervaiz George said the French team, which arrived yesterday, would assist the six-member team Pakistani committee conducting the inquiry into the crash.

The plane was attempting to land in bad weather and poor visibility when it lost contact with the air traffic control and crashed into the Margalla Hills.


First Published: Friday, July 30, 2010, 21:41

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