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Burmese pilots killed In Russian jet crash

Chaing Mai (Mizzima) – Two Burmese pilots died on Saturday when a Russian-made passenger jet crashed during a test flight in southern Russia, according to the Russian news agency RIA Novosti.

Two Antonov-148 jets were ordered by the Burmese government for delivery in March. Photo : wikipedia.orgThe newly designed aircraft, an An-148, crashed in the vicinity of Garbuzovo village, 165 kilometres from Belgorod.

All six crew members on aboard died. It was not clear if the Burmese pilots were flying the plane or observers during the flight.

Burma ordered two An-148 aircraft, which can seat up to 100 passengers, for government use. The first aircraft was to be delivered this month, according to the news agency.

Emergency responders said that there were no casualties on the ground or damage to property.

The An-148 aircraft is a high-wing with two turbofan jet engines mounted in pods under the wing.

The only operator of the Antonov-148 planes in Russia, GTK ‘Rossiya’, has said that the flight control of the plane is not secure enough to provide regular flights, RIA Novosti news agency reported.

The latest tests run by the operator have reportedly revealed more than 200 technical issues concerning the aircraft, said the news agency.

Authorities have launched a criminal probe, the news agency said, to investigate traffic security and operating rules, in connection with the deaths of two or more persons.

Last Updated ( Monday, 07 March 2011 13:37 )  
The Kachin’s last stand
Since October this year, Burma has been in a state of civil war, with fighting between Burmese military and armed ethnic rebels. The ruling junta started a crackdown on these armed groups.

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