A Ukrainian airliner carrying at least 170 passengers crashed on Wednesday due to technical problems soon after taking off from Tehran's Imam Khomeini airport, and all aboard were killed, Iran's state television and a Ukrainian official said.
Reacting to this, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot expressed his deepest condolences. Taking to Twitter, he wrote, "Shocked and saddened to know of the tragic news that a Boeing 737 plane crashed in Iran, in which all passengers on board are reportedly killed."
He also said that his thoughts and prayers are with the bereaved families and may God give them strength in this most difficult time.
Shocked and saddened to know of the tragic news that #Ukraine #Boeing737 plane crashed in #Iran, in which all passengers on board are reportedly killed. My thoughts and prayers are with the bereaved families. May God give them strength in this most difficult time.— Ashok Gehlot (@ashokgehlot51) January 8, 2020
The Boeing 737 belonging to Ukraine International Airlines crashed near the airport and burst into flames. A Ukrainian foreign ministry official in Kyiv said all crew and passengers aboard were killed, citing information from the airline. There was no official word from Ukraine International Airlines.
"The fire is so heavy that we cannot (do) any rescue... we have 22 ambulances, four bus ambulances and a helicopter at the site," Pirhossein Koulivand, head of Iran's emergency services, told Iranian state television. In a statement, Boeing said it was "aware of the media reports" of the incident, and that it was "gathering more information".
The incident came just hours after Iran launched a retaliatory attack on two US military bases in Iraq. The incident also happened just days before the company's new CEO David Calhoun will formally take the job. Calhoun replaces Dennis Muilenburg, who was ousted in December after Boeing's disastrous year.
The American aviation giant is still reeling from the aftermath of two 737 Max crashes, which killed 346 people. The Max has been grounded worldwide since March, and the company has struggled with delays and other issues in its bid to get the planes back in the air.
(With agency inputs)