Jayapura, Papua province (ANTARA News) - The search and rescue team is still looking for three passengers of Merpati Airline which crashed last Saturday (May 7) around 500 kilometers from Utarom airport.

"So far, SAR has found 24 bodies including the plane`s crew members," Chief of Utarom airport administration Kaimana Gagarin Mardiansyah said here on Monday.

Kaimana said one of the victims was a little boy named Rifli Abimanyu, son of a police officer named Tedy Efendi and their money Irmawaty (who also died in the crash).

Kaimana said six of the 24 victims had not been identified.

Earlier, spokesman of the Ministry of Transportation Bambang S Ervan said that a Merpati Nusantara Airlines M160 aircraft made in China had crashed in Papua province in bad weather.

"When it happened the weather was bad and it was raining," Bambang said.

He said however that an investigation to determine the cause of the crash in which 27 people were killed was still being conducted.

"Confirmation of it is still pending the results of investigation by the National Committee of Transportation Safety," he said.

The plane was on the Nabire-Kaimana route.

"The ill-fated plane crashed when it was about to land and touched Runway 19 about 500 meters approaching the runway at around 2 pm local time," he said.

Bambang said evacuation was still being conducted and it was believed all of the passengers and crew had died.

"The plane carried 18 adult passengers, a young boy and two other youngsters, and a crew of which include the pilot Purwandi Wahyu, co-pilot Paul Nap, two stewardesses Sumaryani and Indriyana Puspasari and two technicians Joko and Dadi Tarsidik," he said.


Editor: Suryanto
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