Pakistan World News

Pakistan International Airways flight crashes in north

A Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight with more than 40 people on board has crashed in the north of the country.

Flight PK-661 “lost contact with the control tower on its way from Chitral to Islamabad a short while ago”, the airline said in a statement.

A spokesman for the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) told the BBC that the wreckage had not yet been found.

The national carrier has been accused of safety failures in the past.

In the last major crash in 2006, 44 people died.

The plane came down in the Hevalian area, about 70km (43 miles) north of Islamabad, local media are reporting.

The plane took off from Chitral around 10:00GMT (15:00 local time), losing contact 90 minutes later, shortly before it was due to arrive at its destination, media report.

A famous former pop singer turned Islamic preacher, Junaid Jamshed and his wife were on the flight’s passenger list, according to leading private news channel GEO TV.

The army says it has dispatched troops and helicopters to the location, AP reports.

The EU banned PIA flights from flying to Europe in 2007 over safety concerns.

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