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Investigative journalist and former politician among those killed in Kazakhstan air crash

The Bek Air aircraft hit a concrete fence and a two-storey building after take-off (Picture: east2west news)
A Kazakh plane with 98 people aboard has crashed shortly after take-off, killing at least 12 people, according to authorities.

Rescue workers found a baby alive among the rubble, after the plane crashed into a house.

There were 54 people taken to hospital with injuries, at least 10 of them in critical condition.

Among the dead is a journalist, Dana Kruglova, 35, head of investigations at Informburo Kazakhstan.

Her editor-in-chief Mikhail Dorofeyev described her as ‘honest, brave and unbiased at the same time’, saying her death was a ‘terrible loss for all of us.’

Also killed was Major General Rustem Kairarov, 79, a former Kazakhstan deputy interior minister.

Emergency personnel work at the site of the plane crash near Almaty, Kazakhstan (Picture: Reuters)
Among the dead is a journalist, Dana Kruglova, 35 (Picture: east2west news)

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The Bek Air aircraft hit a concrete fence and a two-storey building after take-off (Picture: east2west news)
The Bek Air aircraft hit a concrete fence and a two-storey building after take-off (Picture: east2west news)

A Kazakh plane with 98 people aboard has crashed shortly after take-off, killing at least 12 people, according to authorities.

Rescue workers found a baby alive among the rubble, after the plane crashed into a house.

There were 54 people taken to hospital with injuries, at least 10 of them in critical condition.


Among the dead is a journalist, Dana Kruglova, 35, head of investigations at Informburo Kazakhstan.

Her editor-in-chief Mikhail Dorofeyev described her as ‘honest, brave and unbiased at the same time’, saying her death was a ‘terrible loss for all of us.’

Also killed was Major General Rustem Kairarov, 79, a former Kazakhstan deputy interior minister.

Emergency personnel work at the site of the plane crash near Almaty, Kazakhstan, December 27, 2019. Emergency Committee of Ministry of Internal Affairs of Kazakhstan/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES.
Emergency personnel work at the site of the plane crash near Almaty, Kazakhstan (Picture: Reuters)
Dana Kruglova - the victim of airplane crash
Among the dead is a journalist, Dana Kruglova, 35 (Picture: east2west news)

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He was later deputy head of the country’s Investigations Committee, in charge of probing serious crimes.

The plane’s captain, Murat Muratbayev, 58, died in hospital after being pulled out of the cockpit at the crash site.

Local authorities had earlier put the death toll at 15, but the Interior Ministry of the Central Asian nation later revised the figure downward.

The cause of the crash was unclear, but authorities are looking at two possible scenarios – pilot error and technical failure, Kazakhstan’s deputy prime minister Roman Sklyar said.

According to the Central Asian bureau, the Kazakh Committee of Emergency Situations has released a list of casualties. Major-General Rustam Kaydarov is among those killed . He previously worked in the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the USSR. Honorary Veteran of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Kazakhstan, Corresponding Member of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences; He is an academic of the International Information Academy, Professor, Chairman of the Board of Governors of the NGO Council of Generals, Honorary Professor of the International Ecological Chamber. General was born on May 18, 1940.
Major-General Rustam Kaydarov, who was a former Kazakhstan deputy interior minister, is among those killed
Murat Muratbayev - aircraft captain
The plane’s captain, Murat Muratbayev, 58, died in hospital (Picture: east2west news)

The Bek Air aircraft hit a concrete fence and a two-storey building after take-off from Almaty International Airport.

Mr Sklyar said the plane’s tail hit the runway twice during takeoff, indicating that it struggled to take off.

One survivor said that the plane started shaking less than two minutes after take-off.

Aslan Nazaraliyev, who survived the crash, said: ‘At first the left wing jolted really hard, then the right.

Alamy Live News. 2AH99DF Almaty, Kazakhstan. 27th Dec, 2019. ALMATY, KAZAKHSTAN - DECEMBER 27, 2019: The site of a crash of a Bek Air plane carrying 95 passengers and 5 crew members near Almaty Airport. A Bek Air Fokker 100 passenger plane flying from Almaty to Nur-Sultan has crashed minutes after takeoff, broken through a concrete guardrail and clashed into a two-storey building. The accident has killed at least 14 people, dozens have been injured. The Press Office of the Committee for Emergency Situations of the Kazakhstan Interior Ministry/TASS Credit: ITAR-TASS News Agency/Alamy Live News This is an Alamy Live News image and may not be part of your current Alamy deal . If you are unsure, please contact our sales team to check.
The Bek Air Fokker 100 passenger plane was flying from Almaty to Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan (Picture: Alamy)

‘The plane continued to gain altitude, shaking quite severely, and then went down.’

In a statement on its Facebook page, the airport said there was no fire and a rescue operation got under way immediately following the crash.

Around 1,000 people were working at the snow-covered site of the crash. The weather in Almaty was clear, with mild sub-zero temperatures.

ALMATY, KAZAKHSTAN - DECEMBER 27: (----EDITORIAL USE ONLY MANDATORY CREDIT - "COMMITTEE FOR EMERGENCY SITUATIONS OF KAZAKHSTAN / HANDOUT" - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS----) A photo shows the wreckage of a passenger plane after it crashed on December 27, 2019 in Almaty, Kazakhstan. At least 15 people were killed and 66 injured early on Friday when a passenger plane crashed while taking off in Kazakhstan. Rescue efforts are underway at the scene, it added. Kazakhstan's President Kassym Jomart Tokayev announced December 28, 2019, to be the day of national mourning due to passenger plane crashed. (Photo by Committee for Emergency Situations of Kazakhstan / Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
Rescue workers found a baby alive among the rubble (Picture: Anadolu)
This handout picture taken on December 27, 2019 and released by Kazakhstan's emergencies committee shows resquers working at the site of a passenger plane crash outside Almaty. - At least 14 people died on December 27, 2019 when a passenger plane carrying 100 people crashed into a house shortly after takeoff from Kazakhstan's largest city, authorities said. (Photo by HO / Kazakhstan's emergencies committee / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / Kazakhstan's emergencies committee" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS (Photo by HO/Kazakhstan's emergencies committ/AFP via Getty Images)
There were 54 people taken to hospital with injuries, at least 10 of them in critical condition (Picture: AFP)
Police stand guard as rescuers assist on the site of a plane crashed near Almaty International Airport, outside Almaty, Kazakhstan, Friday, Dec. 27, 2019. The Kazakhstan plane with 98 people aboard crashed shortly after takeoff early Friday. (AP Photo/Vladimir Tretyakov)
Police stand guard as rescuers assist on the site of a plane crashed near Almaty International Airport (Picture: AP)
ALMATY, KAZAKHSTAN - DECEMBER 27, 2019: The site of a crash of a Bek Air plane carrying 95 passengers and 5 crew members near Almaty Airport. A Bek Air Fokker 100 passenger plane flying from Almaty to Nur-Sultan has crashed minutes after takeoff, broken through a concrete guardrail and clashed into a two-storey building. The accident has killed at least 14 people, dozens have been injured. The Press Office of the Committee for Emergency Situations of the Kazakhstan Interior Ministry/TASS (Photo by TASS\TASS via Getty Images)
Around 1,000 people were working at the snow-covered site of the crash (Picture: Tass)

Footage showed the front of the broken-up fuselage rammed a house, and the rear of the plane lying in the field next to the airport.

The plane was flying to Nur-Sultan, the country’s capital formerly known as Astana.

It was identified as a Fokker-100, a medium-sized, twin-turbofan jet airliner. The company manufacturing the aircraft went bankrupt in 1996 and the production of the Fokker-100 stopped the following year.

All Bek Air and Fokker-100 flights in Kazakhstan have been suspended pending the investigation of the crash, the country’s authorities said.

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