DR Congo authorities confirm no survivors after aircraft plummets

Authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo have confirmed that there were no survivors after military cargo plane crashed in Kinshasa on Saturday.

All the 12 crew members who were on board, both Congolese and foreigners are among the dead.

According to witnesses the plane that was destined for the eastern region of Kivu caught fire shortly after taking off from Kinshasa’s N’djili Airport and crashed in a nearby reserve controlled by the military’s elite Republican Guard units.

The plane went down at N’sele, about 100km east of the city, a source told AFP.

Transport Minister Jose Makila, in a statement read on state television, said there had been a total of “12 crew members on board” but there were “no survivors.”

“An inquiry is underway to determine the likely cause of the accident,” he added.

A source at the army’s headquarters, also speaking on condition of anonymity told AFP that  the plane, which had a Russian crew, was carrying “two vehicles and weapons” as well as military personnel.

A passenger who had been unable to board the flight at Ndjili said the plane’s destination was Bukavu, capital of the sub-region of Sud-Kivu, which lies on the frontier with Rwanda.