A Soviet-designed Ilyushin Il-76 military plane carrying soldiers crashed soon after takeoff in a farm field in northern Algeria on Wednesday.
At least 100 people were killed. Unconfirmed, a few reports suggest however 200 people were killed in the crash. The plane was also carrying military equipment. It crashed in an agricultural zone where there are reportedly no residents. A fire broke out at the scene of the crash. Fourteen ambulances and ten fire engines were dispatched to the area. The cause of the crash was unclear. The aircraft went down in a field near the Boufarik military base, 20 miles from the capital and close to the Mediterranean Sea. Television footage showed black smoke billowing near a motorway and a crowd of security officials and others standing in a field next to the crash site.
Smoke at the scene of accident
The Defense Ministry did not provide a death toll but expressed condolences to the victims’ families. The National People’s Army forces dispatched civil protection units to the site. Search and rescue mission is currently going on. More than 300 emergency workers are working at the scene. An investigation has been opened. The Algerian Air Force's fleet includes 14 Ilyushin Il-76 planes, in addition to other aircraft and helicopters built in Russia, the US or Europe.
This story will possibly be updated