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Two plane crashes hit West Africa, over 150 dead

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    Two plane crashes in West Africa last weekend has left over 150 people dead. In Nigeria's commercial hub, Lagos, a passenger plane crashed into a densely populated part of the city on Sunday, killing all 147 people on board while a cargo plane also crash landed in Ghana's capital Accra, hitting a bus full of passengers killings at least 10 people.

    Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan has declared three days of national mourning and ordered an investigation into the cause of the crash which jolted residents of Lagos' Agege suburb where most live in tin-roofed buildings along unpaved streets.

    The McDonnell Douglas MD-83, operated by privately owned domestic carrier Dana Air, was coming into land on a flight from the capital Abuja when it hit the building, not far from Lagos's Murtala Muhammed Airport, at 2:44 p.m. (1344 GMT) and burst into flames, according to the airline.

    Among the dead was the spokesman for the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, Levi Ajuonuma, according to a passenger list released by the airline. Ajuonuma was also de facto spokesman for the oil minister in OPEC member Nigeria, Africa's biggest crude producer.

    Dana Air said it was still investigating what caused the crash.

    Thousands of people crowded around a the smouldering remains of a two-story tin-roofed building into which the aircraft had plunged.

    Police used truncheons to beat back the massed onlookers on the scene, trying to make a path for rescue services, but the crowd was so large that some ambulances, sirens wailing, were unable to get through.

    "This crowd is crazy. The rescuers can't even get access," said Jimoh, a local motorbike taxi man who said he had felt a huge thud as the aircraft struck.

    Ghana

    Local TV showed the heavily damaged Boeing 727 Allied Air plane lying across a road close to Kotoka International Airport.

    Ghana's airport operator said the plane, which had flown from Lagos, Nigeria, overshot the runway.

    It said in a statement that the four crew members were receiving treatment at an airport clinic.

    "The aircraft collided with a minivan, resulting in 10 confirmed fatalities," the statement added.

    Police and troops cordoned off the scene following the incident just after 19:00 GMT on Saturday.

    Ghana's Vice President John Dramani Mahama told reporters at the airport that a thorough investigation would be carried out.

    "No early conclusions should be drawn. We should allow investigations to arrive at the actual cause. But I can assure Ghanaians that the situation is under control," he said.

    Ghana Airport Company said flights were continuing as normal at the airport.

    Kofi Kportufe, head of Ghana's national disaster management agency, praised the emergency services for their quick response, which he said had "averted further disaster".

    "This is a sad day for Ghana," he said.

    Ghana's air safety record has been good in recent years.
    http://www.africanews.com/site/Two_p...messages/41771
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    The Czech Republic shows solidarity with both nations affected.
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    This is a sad day for Nigeria and as such we have called for a 3-day mourning period.
    We will also assess the situation and damage to see the kind of action that should be taken.
    Thank you for your condolences.
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    Jamaica wishes to offer it's condolences to the families of all those involved and to anyone else affected by these two extremely unfortunate tragedies.
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    Australia sends her condolences to all those affected.
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    Greece sends her condolences to the nation of Nigeria.
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    Spain's thoughts are with both Nigeria and Ghana during these times of mourning.
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    Iran offers her condolences to the victims of this tragedy and the Nigerian people.

    Indonesia echoes the remarks of Iran.
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    The Oriental Republic of Uruguay offers its condolences to the families of the victims and the two nations involved.
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    Switzerland is absolutely saddened by the events in West Africa and will help by providing aid.
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    Qatar & the IAED send their condolences to those affected and are willing to provide aid financially and in other ways which deem to be useful.
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    The MHoC offers its condolences to the families and the Nigerian people as a whole. The MHoC is watching the situation and is ready to support our Nigerian friends and allies.
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    Nigeria would again like to thank all nations for their comments regarding this terrible situation

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Updated: June 14, 2012
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