Cargo aircraft crashes in Greece

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Cargo aircraft crashes in Greece

A cargo aircraft crashed near Paleochori Kavalas in northern Greece late Saturday, reported DW, quoting news agencies AFP, dpa, AP, Reuters.

According to Greek Civil Aviation authorities, the plane operated by a Ukraine-based airline was traveling from Serbia to Jordan.

The pilot had reportedly requested clearance to make an emergency landing at nearby Kavala airport due to an engine problem, but did not manage to reach it.

The aircraft was already in flames before it crashed, people close to the crash site told local media.

Ongoing explosions at the crash site, say officials

State-run broadcaster ERT television reported that it was an Antonov aircraft owned by a Ukrainian company.

The fire service said in a statement that it has cordoned off the crash site.

Local officials said 15 firefighters and seven fire engines had been deployed to the area. More rescuers were on their way.

But the firefighters were finding it difficult to approach the site because of the ongoing explosions, officials said.

"We were hearing explosions until a few minutes ago," Filippos Anastassiadis, mayor of the municipality of Paggaio, told the Associated Press. "I am about 300 meters from the site of the crash."

'Treating the cargo as dangerous material'

There is no official information about the number of people onboard the plane.

But ERT reported that the plane was carrying eight people and that its cargo "was dangerous," including munitions.

Police were asking people to leave the area and journalists at the scene to wear masks, the report added.

The special disaster response unit was also investigating the scene.

"We are treating the cargo as dangerous material," a fire brigade official told Reuters news agency.

Cargo aircraft crashes in Greece

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