Pakistan passenger plane crashes in Karachi

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A Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) plane with 99 passengers and crew crashed into a residential area of the city of Karachi on Friday, officials said.

Flight PK8303, which was carrying around 91 passengers and eight crew, was flying from Lahore to Jinnah International Airport, one of Pakistan’s busiest airports.

Pictures showed a scene of devastation in the Model Colony residential area.

Emergency services have arrived. There is no confirmation on casualties so far, but many are feared dead.

The plane, an Airbus A320, was about to land when it crashed near Model Colony, a neighbourhood of Karachi about 3.2km (two miles) north-east of Jinnah International Airport.

Pakistan’s army said soldiers from its quick reaction force had reached the crash site to help rescue efforts.

The cause of the crash is yet to be confirmed. PIA chief executive, Air Vice Marshal Arshad Malik said the pilot had told traffic control that the plane was experiencing “technical difficulties”.

Pakistan’s Prime Minister, Imran Khan said he was “shocked and saddened” by the crash, promising an immediate investigation.

The crash comes just days after the country began allowing commercial flights to resume after a coronavirus lockdown.

Pakistanis across the country are preparing to celebrate the end of Ramadan, with many travelling back to their homes in cities and villages.

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