Germanwings passenger plane crashes in France, up to 150 feared dead

An Airbus plane operated by Lufthansa’s Germanwings budget airline crashed in southern France on Tuesday en route from Barcelona to Duesseldorf, police and aviation officials said. French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said he understood between 142 and 150 people were on board and feared dead.

“The cause is at present unknown,” he told reporters. French President Francois Hollande said there are likely no survivors.

In a live briefing

An Airbus plane operated by Lufthansaand#39s Germanwings budget airline crashed in southern France on Tuesday en route from Barcelona to Duesseldorf, police and aviation officials said.

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said he understood between 142 and 150 people were on board and feared dead.

andquotThe cause is at present unknown,andquot he told reporters.

French President Francois Hollande said there are likely no survivors.

In a live briefing Tuesday, Hollande said the area of the crash was remote and it was not clear whether anyone on the ground had been hurt. Hollande said it was probable that a number of the victims are German.

andquotItand#39s a tragedy on our soil,andquot he said, adding he would be speaking shortly with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

A spokesman for the DGAC aviation authority said the airplane crashed near the town of Barcelonnette about 100 kilometers (65 miles) north of the French Riviera city of Nice.

Lufthansaand#39s Germanwings unit said it was as yet unable to verify reports of the crash.

The crashed A320 is 24 years old and has been with the parent Lufthansa group since 1991, according to online database airfleets.

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SOURCE: Today’s Zaman