Ethiopian Plane Crashes After Takeoff, 157 Believed To Be Dead

An Ethiopian Airlines flight en route to Nairobi crashed shortly after takeoff, with the airline confirming that there were no survivors.

The pilot had reported difficulties and asked for permission to turn back.

The Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 crashed on Sunday, shortly after taking off from Addis Ababa. The airline said 149 passengers and eight crew members were believed to be on board the Nairobi-bound flight, according to an airline statement.

The new Boeing 737-8 MAX plane, said to have been delivered in mid-November, was one of 30 purchased and being delivered to the rapidly expanding airline.

It is not yet clear what caused the crash just six minutes after takeoff en route to Nairobi.

The Ethiopian Airlines CEO and Kenya’s transport minister say Canadians, Chinese, Americans and others are among the many nationalities among the victims of Sunday morning’s deadly plane crash after takeoff from Addis Ababa.

Authorities earlier said 32 Kenyans and nine Ethiopians were killed. Now they add 18 Canadians; eight each from China, the United States and Italy; seven each from France and Britain; six from Egypt; five from the Netherlands and four each from India and Slovakia.

The airline has said that among the dead are 32 Kenyans, 18 Canadians, nine Ethiopians, eight each from the United States, China and Italy.

There were also seven passengers each from France and the United Kingdom, six from Egypt, five from the Netherlands and four each from India and Slovakia. Spanish officials also said that two Spanish nationals were on the passenger list.

A statement by the Ethiopia’s prime minister’s office expressed its “deepest condolences” to families of the victims.

The plane — which was delivered just last year — dropped from radar six minutes after departing Bole airport in Addis Ababa. The cause of the crash was not immediately known.

Ethiopian Airlines’ CEO said the plane that crashed “had no known technical problems.” Tewolde Gebremariam, who traveled to the accident scene, said the pilot of the crashed plane had reported difficulties and asked for permission to turn back.

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