INTERNATIONAL

Laos military plane crashes today, killing 2 ministers and 15 others

Tuoi Tre

Updated : 05/17/2014 14:14 GMT + 7

A military plane of Laos with many senior government officials aboard was reported to crash at 7:00am today morning in Xiangkhoang, the northern province of Laos, killing 17 and injuring three others.

The office of Laotian government confirmed that 17 were killed and 3 other were injured in the accident.

The Minister of National Defence and the Minister of Public Security of Laos were reported to die in the accident.

However, the Lao News Agency today also confirmed that the An-74TK300 aircraft crashed in Nadee Village, Paek District of Xiengkouang Province, but didn’t report the death toll.

The headquarters of the provincial border guard unit in Ha Tinh, the central province of Vietnam, confirmed the news with Tuoi Tre.

The unit added that the plane was carrying 20 high ranking Laotian officials to take part in a ceremony to commemorate the establishment of the second Battalion of Laos. The battalion joined to liberate Xiangkhoang province decades ago.

It was reported that the plane crashed into a big tree on preparing to land at a local airport.

Besides the two ministers, Party Secretary of Vientiane City and chief of the Central Department of Propaganda and Training were reported in the death toll.