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PLANE CRASH

Search-and-rescue operation ongoing for missing men after plane crashes off northern coast

Search-and-rescue operation ongoing for missing men after plane crashes off northern coast

Search and rescue operations are underway after a small training plane crashed into the Mediterranean Sea off the Lebanese coast in northern Halat. (Credit: Issam Abdallah/Reuters)

BEIRUT — A search is ongoing for two men who were aboard a training plane that crashed into the Mediterranean Sea off Lebanon’s northern coast on Tuesday morning, a statement from the Lebanese prime minister’s office said.

A team comprising Civil Defense and naval forces was dispatched to conduct a search-and-rescue operation for the two missing men from the plane, which the Lebanese Army said crashed at 10:30 a.m. and belonged to Lebanon’s aviation club.

“Prime Minister Najib Mikati called on the army to send a helicopter and help search for the training plane belonging to the Lebanese Aviation Club that crashed into the sea, and search for the two men who were on board. He also requested the mobilization of the naval forces in the search and rescue mission,” the statement said.

According to a statement from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation, the aircraft belonged to the Aeroclub of Lebanon and had taken off from Rafic Hariri International Airport in Beirut at 10 a.m., “towards coastal Jbeil based on a flight plan previously approved by the Air Navigation Authority of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation.”

“At around 10:24 local time, the plane disappeared from the air navigation radar screens over the sea in the Halat area.” 

About an hour after the crash, Interior Minister Bassam Mawlawi traveled to Halat to observe the search operation. “I am following up closely on the rescue journey, and I asked the Civil Defense to intensify its search, and I have instructed [Internal Security Forces] to take part in the rescue mission,” Mawlawi wrote in a statement on Twitter.

Speaking with the news site Elnashra, the aviation club’s president, Michel Abboud, said the club was investigating the circumstances surrounding the the crash but that it had received no reports of technical issues in the leadup to the accident.


BEIRUT — A search is ongoing for two men who were aboard a training plane that crashed into the Mediterranean Sea off Lebanon’s northern coast on Tuesday morning, a statement from the Lebanese prime minister’s office said.A team comprising Civil Defense and naval forces was dispatched to conduct a search-and-rescue operation for the two missing men from the plane, which the Lebanese Army...