Body parts, fragments of crashed plane found

Wed 06 Jul 2011 06:37 GMT | 10:37 Local Time

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Fragments of an Azerbaijani cargo plane that crashed in Afghanistan last night have been found in Parvand Province, 50 km north of the capital Kabul.

Body parts have also been found along with the fragments near Siagerd in Afghanistan's Parwan Province, Russian news agency RIA-Novosti reports.

Representatives of the local authorities say that when the plane crashed it broke up into 10 to 20 pieces, most of which have been burned. The police have found burnt limbs in the area of the crash, but identification has not yet been possible.

Adil Gasimov, an advisor to the director of Silk Way Airlines, owners of the crashed plane, and a member of the commission investigating the crash, has named the nine crew members who were on board the aircraft.

  1. Captain Sergey Kuzmin (born in 1969)
  2. Co-pilot Oleg Marshikhin (born in 1979, an Azerbaijani citizen)
  3. Navigator Igor Zheng (1966)
  4. Onboard engineer Vladimir Shatobin (1969)
  5. Radio operator Ahmedjan Khajayev (1955, an Azerbajiani citizen)
  6. Radio operator Elnur Mahmudov (1981, an Azerbaijani citizen)
  7. Onboard operator Tapdig Gahramanov (1964, an Azerbaijani citizen)
  8. Mechanic Afghan Rahimov (1980, an Azerbaijani citizen)
  9. Mechanic Mehman Huseynov (1962, an Azerbaijani citizen)

The plane was carrying a cargo of fuel for the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan, according to Afghan TV channels.

The US embassy in Azerbaijan is working closely with Silk Way Airlines and the US embassy in Kabul, including the military attaches' office, to provide assistance in the crash investigation, Keith Bean, spokesman for the US embassy in Baku, told He expressed condolences to the families of the dead.

Afghanistan's air traffic control lost contact with the Il-76 plane as it was preparing to land at Bagram airport at 02.10 Baku time on Wednesday (21.10 GMT on 5 July) and it disappeared from the radar screens, Azerbaijan's State Civil Aviation Administration said in a statement earlier today.

Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid claimed to Afghan journalists that the plane had been shot down by the Taliban as it was carrying US weapons, Iran's Fars news agency reported.

The governor of Siagerd, where the plane crashed, Abdulhalim Mujaddidi, denied that the Taliban had shot down the plane.

Afghan officials and a spokesman for ISAF, British Maj. Tim James, said the plane had plunged into a mountainside.

Azerbaijan's Civil Aviation Administration said the crew had reported no problems before communications were lost. A collision with an unknown object could, therefore, have been the cause of the crash.

The Russian-built Ilyushin-76 4K-AZ 55 was built in 2005 and all its technical inspections were up-to-date. Capt Kuzmin was an experienced pilot with 4,576 flying hours under his belt.





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