No survivors in Russian plane crash

No survivors in Russian plane crash

The Antonov-148 of Saratov Airlines with 65 passengers and a crew of six was en route from Domodedovo Airport in Moscow to Orsk of the Orenburg Region in western Russian Federation.

The plane dissappeared from radar shortly after taking off.

Russia's Interfax news agency said the Saratov Airlines AN-148 jet crashed near the village of Argunovo in the Moscow region. Moderate snow was falling in much of Moscow at the time of the crash.

Debris of the crashed An-148 plane were discovered in the Ramesnky District of the Moscow Region, the main directorate of the Emergencies Ministry in the Moscow Region said.

But Russia's website reported the pilot had called in a technical malfunction and asked for clearance for an emergency landing, citing unnamed investigators.

Earlier, Interfax reported that a passenger plane had crashed and a source told the agency there was "no chance" of finding survivors.

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"Fragments of the An-148 and several bodies have been found near the village of Stepanovskoye", the agency said in a statement released by the state-run TASS news agency. The cause of the crash wasn't immediately known.

President Vladimir Putin offered condolences to those who had lost relatives and ordered a special investigative commission to be set up.

The Emergencies Ministry said more than 400 people and 70 vehicles had been deployed to the crash site.

The Saratov Airlines flight disappeared from radar just minutes after departure for the city of Orsk, some 1,500 kilometres (1,000 miles) to the southeast.

The plane was flying to Orsk, a city in the Urals.