Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE DEBATE

Zero Tolerance: Does Border Security Trump Compassion?

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Let's become French!

Read more

FOCUS

Taking sides: The dual-nationality footballers playing at the World Cup

Read more

FASHION

Dior trots out Cruise collection at Chantilly stables

Read more

YOU ARE HERE

France's Pelagos sanctuary, a haven for whales and dolphins

Read more

#THE 51%

Developing a code of their own: Are women leading the tech revolution in Paris?

Read more

#TECH 24

Motorsport innovation

Read more

ENCORE!

Jennifer Jason Leigh on 'Patrick Melrose' and all-female casts

Read more

REPORTERS

Video: Turkey tracks down the opposition, beyond its borders

Read more

Europe

Plane crash in Malta kills French anti-trafficking team on board

© Matthew Mirabelli, AFP | Emergency workers at the site of the wreckage of a small plane, which crashed from Malta International Airport, on October 24, 2016.

Video by FRANCE 24

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2016-10-24

A French-chartered plane monitoring trafficking activity in the Mediterranean crashed in a ball of flames at Malta's international airport on Monday, killing all five people on board, officials said.

The plane, which had been chartered by French customs, plummeted into the ground shortly after take-off, the Maltese government said in a statement.

It added that all the victims were French nationals and that there was no indication of an explosion on board prior to the crash.

The French defence ministry confirmed the deaths, describing the plane as having been involved in "reconnaissance missions in the Mediterranean".

The Maltese government said the aircraft was a Fairchild Metroliner Mark III registered in the United States and leased to a Luxembourg company.

It took off around 7.20 am (0520 GMT). Shortly afterwards it was seen plunging nose-first towards the ground and exploding into a ball of flames.

"Official information, footage and eyewitnesses, including three members of the Armed Forces of Malta at the nearby barracks, and two commercial airline pilots, clearly indicate that there was no explosion prior to impact," a government statement said, adding that an investigation was under way.

Remains of all five victims had been recovered.

"The flight was part of a French customs surveillance operation which has been taking place for the past five months, with the aim of tracing routes of illicit trafficking of all sorts, including human and drug trafficking amongst others," the government said.

"The flight was registered with the Malta Air Traffic Services as a local flight and was to return to Malta within hours without landing in third countries."

(AFP)
 

Date created : 2016-10-24

COMMENT(S)