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Plane crashes in Congo, 13 dead

world Updated: Aug 27, 2007 10:22 IST
Xinhua
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At least 13 people were killed and two, including a baby boy, survived after a small plane crashed in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

After taking off from Kongolo city in the country's mineral-rich Katanga province, the plane developed a technical snag in its engine Sunday, airport officials said.

The Russian pilot tried to fly back to Kongolo Airport but the plane crashed three kilometres short of the runway.

Thirteen crewmembers and passengers were killed, but a young man and a two-year-old baby boy survived the accident.

The plane was on its way to Goma, the main city in North Kivu province, with around nine tonnes of cassiterite (tin oxide) and other minerals.

The DRC is rich in minerals, which are often exported. Yet flights for mineral transport in the country are increasingly dangerous, as most of the planes lack maintenance and spare parts, and the flight infrastructure is poor.