66 dead after plane crashes into Zagros mountains in central Iran

An Iranian passenger plane with 66 persons on board crashed into the country's Zagros mountains on Sunday. All the passengers and crew members on the flight died in the crash.

66 dead after plane crashes into Zagros mountains in central Iran
Photo: Twitter.com/asemanairlines

An Iranian passenger plane with 66 persons on board crashed into the country's Zagros mountains on Sunday. All the passengers and crew members on the flight died in the crash.

The plane was carrying 60 passengers, including one child, and six crew members.

The Aseman Airlines flight was flying from Tehran`s Mehrabad airport in the morning (0430 GMT) to Yasouj in Isfahan province. The plane was a twin-engine turboprop ATR-72.

It crashed into Dena mountain, part of the Zagros range, around 23 kilometres from Yasuj, some 500 kilometres south of the capital, said Mohammad Tabatabai, director of public relations for the airlines. Zagros is the largest mountain range in Iran, Iraq and southeastern Turkey.

"After searches in the area, unfortunately, we were informed that the plane crashed. Unfortunately, all our dear ones lost their lives in this incident," said Tabatabai.

Rescue operations was hampered due to the severe weather conditions and hilly terrain of the region. 

"Given the fact that the area is mountainous, it is not possible to send ambulances," Mojtaba Khaledi, spokesman for the national emergency services told the semi-official ISNA news agency.

A helicopter, sent to the area for rescue services, could not land at the site of the accident, he added. 

Meanwhile, Relief and Rescue Organisation of Iran`s Red Crescent said it has dispatched 12 teams to the region. 

"An ATR aircraft of Aseman Airlines with 60 passengers and about six crew disappeared from radar this morning," Aladin Borujerdi, head of parliament`s national security and foreign policy commission, told the semi-official ISNA news agency. 

Decades of international sanctions have left Iran with an ageing fleet of passenger planes which it has struggled to maintain and modernise. 

It has suffered multiple aviation disasters, most recently in 2014 when a Sepahan plane crashed killing 39 people. 

With agency inputs

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