An Iranian Boeing 707 cargo plane crashed Monday west of the capital of Tehran killing nearly all passengers. The plane landed at the Revolutionary Guard-run Fath airport but skidded off the 1,100 meter runway and into an adjacent neighborhood, bursting into flames.
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Fifteen people on board were killed and one survived the crash.
The plane, which was transporting meat from Kyrgyzstan, was meant to land at the Payam International Airport, about 10 km from the Fath facility, according to the AP.
Information wasn’t immediately available as to why landing plans changed, as Payam’s runway is three times the length of Fath’s. An anonymous aviation official told Iran’s state-run IRNA news agency that the pilot mistook Fath for Payam, which has happened in the past with other flights.
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"We have recovered seven corpses in the plane wreckage. The search continues," the director of the Iranian Emergency Department, Pirhossein Kolivand told IRNA earlier Monday, but that by the afternoon all 15 victims had been found.
According to the AP, Iran had hoped to replace its aging aviation fleet with the introduction of the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers. However, President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the accord last May delayed Iran’s ability to buy billions of dollars in new Airbus and Boeing aircraft.
The Iranian air force said they were not ruling out “martyrdom,” as part of its investigation, alluding to the possibility the crash was purposeful, according to the AP.
The lone survivor has been hospitalized and is in critical condition.