A military transport plane has crashed in southern Kazakhstan, killing all 27 people on board. News footage from the scene shows mangled fragments of the aircraft in a swirling blizzard. A crew of seven was on board, along with 20 military personnel.
The twin-engined Antonov jet disappeared from radar screens at 7pm as it made its fourth attempt to land at Shymkent, the regional capital of South Kazakhstan.
“The plane broke up into four parts on impact”, an eyetwitness told reporters, “there were bodies lying on the ground. Locals raced to the site but the police had cordoned off the site and would let no one in. We couldn’t get any nearer.”
The commander of the country’s border guards was among those on board.