2nd plane with victims of Russian jet crash to leave Egypt

2015-11-02 11:04
File: AFP

File: AFP

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Saint Petersburg - A second plane carrying victims of the Russian passenger jet crash is set to leave Egypt Monday evening, Russian officials said, as relatives prepared to identify the remains of their loved ones in Saint Petersburg.

Russia's emergency situations ministry said that the second flight was scheduled to take off from Cairo at 18:00 GMT, but did not give any indication of how many bodies would be on board.

A first plane touched down in Russia's second largest city early on Monday carrying the remains of 140 of the victims, officials said, a slight revision down from an earlier figure of 144.

"One hundred and forty bodies have been repatriated, according to the latest information. There are body fragments that is why there was a discrepancy," Saint Petersburg deputy governor Igor Albin told AFP.

Russian airline Kogalymavia's flight 9268 crashed en route from Sharm el-Sheikh to Saint Petersburg on Saturday, killing all 224 people on board, the vast majority of them Russian tourists.

Rescue mission

Albin told news agencies that Russian experts had already started work on the remains of the victims and relatives would start identifying them later in the day.

"It will be targeted, individual work. We will invite the relatives in one by one," he said.

Family members have been providing DNA samples at a crisis centre set up close to Saint Petersburg Pulkovo airport, now the site of an impromptu memorial where people have brought flowers and cuddly toys to commemorate the victims, many of them children.

Investigators from several countries have joined an Egypt-led probe at the site of the crash in the Sinai peninsula to determine what brought down the passenger jet, with experts saying the plane had broken up in the air.

Russia's emergency situations ministry said it hoped to end its search and rescue mission at the remote crash site by 20:00 GMT Monday.

A representative from the ministry told news agencies on Monday that investigators had so far found 12 segments of the plane's fuselage and personal belongings.

Read more on:    russia  |  egypt  |  north africa

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