10 killed in Yemen military plane crash: ministry

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A military plane crashed in Sanaa on Wednesday, killing all 10 people on board as it tried to make an emergency landing when an engine failed, Yemen's defence ministry and an airport source said.

"An Antonov crashed following a technical problem. The pilot and nine other people were killed," a statement on the defence ministry's website 26sep.net said.

A civil defence source said five officers were among the victims.

The plane crashed into an empty lot in Sanaa's northern neighbourhood of Al-Hassaba, according to an AFP photographer who saw three charred bodies lying on the ground at the crash site.

The airport source said the Antonov came down while trying to land at an air base near Sanaa's main airport.

"The military aircraft, which was on a training mission, tried to make an emergency landing after its engine failed but crashed at Al-Hassaba," the source told AFP.

A resident said three explosions occurred as the plane crashed, followed by plumes of smoke.

Firefighters and ambulances raced to the site, while a helicopter flew overhead. The Russian-built plane itself was reduced to a burnt-out hulk by the crash.

In October 2011, four people were killed when an Antonov crashed on landing at Al-Anad air base in southern Yemen.

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