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Bad weather blamed for Laos Airlines crash, 49 passengers and crew killed

A Laos Airlines plane plunged into the Mekong river in southern Laos on Wednesday, killing all 49 people on board... The aircraft, which was flying from the capital Vientiane was just eight kilometres short of its destination. (SOUNDBITE) (Lao) UNIDENTIFIED WITNESS AND PAKSE RESIDENT, SAYING: "The plane flew in that way heading towards Marong village and turned towards the airport. Then it fell and crashed." The airline has suggested that bad weather may have contributed to the accident. Strong winds from the tail end of a typhoon have been passing over the area, making it a difficult task for divers trying to retrieve bodies from the muddy river. Bodies that have already been recovered were laid out at a nearby temple. Investigators sift through the wreckage to determine the cause of the crash, that killed nationals of ten countries, ranging from Australia to France. The aricraft -- an ATR-72 turboprop -- was brand new.

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