A plane crashed en route a mining region in southern Suriname today killing at least 19 people, officials in the South American country said.
The twin-engine Antonov-A28 was operated by a Surinamese carrier, Blue Wing Airlines, said Kenneth Dors, Suriname's air traffic services director.
Dors said 19 or 20 people were on board, including two crew members, but officials were still trying to determine the exact number. All on board died in the crash.
Another official, Brian Desouza, flight safety division manager for the aviation authority, said 19 were on board and all were apparently Surinamese.
The plane took off from the capital, Paramaribo, and crashed in a wooded area near the airstrip of its remote destination in the country's interior, Desouza said.
Authorities had not yet determined the cause. "The local people have reached the aircraft; they know what the situation is," Desouza said. "We're putting up investigation teams."
Suriname is a sparsely-populated former Dutch colony on the northeastern shoulder of South America.