Russian military’s Syria bound plane TU-154 crashed in Black Sea shortly after taking off from the resort city Sochi. Russian defence ministry has confirmed death of all 92 passengers and crew members who were onboard on the fateful aircraft.
Russian authorities have determined the crash site and have so far recovered 10 bodies. No survivors in the tragic incident are expected, the Russian Defense Ministry’s press service said on Sunday.
A source in the law enforcement agencies told official news agencies that bodies of ten crash victims had been found so far.
“The crash area of the Tu-154 aircraft has been defined. There are no survivors,” the press service said in a statement. On Sunday, the Russian Defense Ministry Tu-154 aircraft en route to Syria with 92 people on board crashed in the Black Sea shortly after refueling at an airport in the resort city of Adler. Fragments of the plane were discovered 1 mile from the sea shore of Sochi.
Russian TV channels showed that rescue helicopters had discovered debris in the Black Sea from a Russian military transport plane which went off radar en route to Syria. Most of the passengers on the Tu-154 were members of the famous Alexandrov Ensemble army choir.
According to preliminary reports, the Tupolev transport plane had 92 people on board, including 84 passengers and eight crew members. It went missing over the Black Sea at 2:40 GMT shortly after refueling at an airport near Sochi.
Most of the passengers on board were members of the Alexandrov Ensemble, the official choir of the Russian Armed Forces, the Russian Defense Ministry said. They were travelling from Moscow to the Russian military base Khmeimim near Latakia, Syria to take part in a Christmas celebration with troops deployed there. The head of the choir, conductor and composer Valery Khalilov, is among the 65 members of the ensemble presumed dead in the accident.
Crews from Channel One Russia, NTV, and Zvezda (the official media outlet of the Russian Defense Ministry), each with three members, were on board as well, the outlets confirmed.
The passenger list released by the defense ministry also includes Elizaveta Glinka, a prominent charity activist and humanitarian worker. She is best known by her blogger nickname “Doctor Liza.” Some reports initially said she may have deplaned in Sochi, but the Presidential Council for Human Rights confirmed that she was on board.
Glinka was best known for aiding children with serious conditions like cancer, homeless people, and other vulnerable individuals. In the past few years, she organized humanitarian missions to conflict zones, including eastern Ukraine and Syria. For her efforts, she was awarded the Order of Friendship in 2012, the fifth highest state award in Russia.Follow Meri Sarkar