Indonesian rescuers find wreckage of Russian jet | News | DW | 10.05.2012
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Indonesian rescuers find wreckage of Russian jet

Rescuers have found the wreckage of a Russian-made passenger jet that had disappeared in Indonesia with almost 50 passengers on board. Debris was seen on the side of a mountain to the south of the capital, Jakarta.

Indonesian officials said a helicopter spotted the wreckage of the Russian Sukhoi Superjet 100, which disappeared on Wednesday, on the side of a cliff on Mount Salak, an eroded volcanic range in West Java province.

"From the pictures we're seeing, it looks like it was a total loss," said Daryatmo, chief of the national search and rescue agency, who like many Indonesians uses only his first name.

The plane, the newest major aircraft to be produced by the Russian aerospace industry, had been on a demonstration flight and was carrying 47 people. Passengers included potential buyers, diplomats and journalists.

The aircraft took off from an airport in Jakarta on Wednesday afternoon, but disappeared from radar screens 21 minutes later. It was flying to the south of the capital in light rain at the time.

Helicopters had resumed a search on Thursday suspended earlier due to bad weather.

The aircraft had been designed to carry between 75 and 95 passengers on medium-haul routes. As Russia's first new passenger jet since the fall of the Soviet Union, the Superjet 100 has been viewed as the country's best hope of carving out a niche in the lucrative passenger plane market.

rc, ncy/gb (AFP, dpa, Reuters, AP)