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Mon, May 26, 2003

Ukrainian Yak-42 Down In Turkey

74 Dead, Mostly Spanish Troops Heading Home from Afghanistan

A Ukrainian Yak-42 is reported down in Turkey after trying to land in heavy fog. The Yak 42, a three turbofan powered short/medium range passenger transport, apparently went down after executing its third attempt to land, despite thick fog at Trabzon, Turkey.

Official reports indicate that the pilot reported not being able to discern the runway in the first two attempts, with the aircraft dropping from radar surveillance on the third attempt, at 0445, local. The Yak was enroute from Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, to Zaragoza, Spain. Trabzon was scheduled to be a fuel stop.

The impact site is a near the town of Macka, some 30 miles south of the Black Sea port of Trabzon. On board were 62 passengers, reported to be Spanish peacekeepers and 12 crew members. Onsite searches reveal no survivors and little likelihood of any.

The troops were returning from Afghanistan where they had been involved in the International peacekeeping effort and were reportedly involved in mine-clearing, construction and other tasks.

FMI: www.un.org

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