Kathmandu A passenger plane with 22 people on board is missing, according to the police in Nepal. Air traffic control lost contact with the machine shortly before 10 a.m. on Sunday morning, police spokesman Bishnu Kumar KC told the German Press Agency. According to the authorities, there were also two Germans in the small machine, reports the AP news agency.
The plane of the Nepalese airline Tara Air was with 19 passengers and three crew members on the way from Pokhara – a popular tourist destination around 200 kilometers west of Kathmandu – to Jomsom.
The bad weather in the region is making the ongoing search for the missing plane more difficult.
It had rained in the area in the past few days, but air traffic was normal. Data from the website flightradar24.com showed that the 43-year-old machine had sent its last signal twelve minutes after take-off. At that time she was at an altitude of 3900 meters.
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The short route from Pokhara, 200 kilometers east of the capital Kathmandu, to Jomsom is popular with climbers from abroad. Pilgrims from India and Nepal also visit the Muktinath Temple in the area. According to the information, there were a total of six foreigners on the plane – in addition to the two Germans, there were also four Indians.
Airplanes have to fly on the route between the mountains before landing in a valley. There have been repeated plane crashes along the route. In 2016, a Tara Airlines Twin Otter crashed shortly after takeoff, killing all 23 people on board. In 2012, an Agni Air plane crashed between Pokhara and Jomsom, killing 15 people. Two years later, a Nepal Airlines plane crashed on the route. There were 18 dead.
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