A plane carrying the several senior officials, including two ministers, crashed in Laos.
The plane crashed in the northeastern province of Sienkuang; the plane had to fly only 4 km to the runway. Nothing has been reported about the causes of the tragedy. Only three people survived of 18 passengers and crew on board.
On board the An-74, there were ministers of defense and public safety with their spouses, as well as the mayor of the Laotian capital of Vientiane, deputy head of the Government Office, Deputy Minister of Culture and several other representatives of the country's leadership. The officials were flying to a military parade which was to be held in connection with the anniversary of one of the divisions of the People's Army of Laos.
Among the dead are the ministers of defense and public safety, the deputy chief of the Office of the Government and the mayor of Vientiane.
The national television of Laos confirmed the crash of the An-74 TC 300 in the province of Siengkuang.
The crashed aircraft was practically new. Laos acquired the plane to transport VIP passengers across the country.
An-74 is produced by Ukrainian aircraft-maker Antonov. In Russia, there are over 20 aircraft of this type.