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Turkish jet from U.A.E. crashes in Iran, killing 11

Sheetal Sukhija - Monday 12th March, 2018

DUBAI, U.A.E. - A Turkish private jet flying from the United Arab Emirates to Istanbul crashed into a mountain about 370 kilometers from Tehran and burst into flames.

The jet is said to have hit a mountain in Shahr-e Kord and had been carrying a group of young women.

The jet crashed in the mountainous region of Iran during a heavy rain on Sunday night and authorities confirmed that all the 11 people on board were killed.

Mojtaba Khaledi, the spokesman of the country's emergency management organization said that local villagers had reached the site in the Zagros Mountains and found 11 badly burned bodies in the wreckage. 

He further added that DNA tests would be carried out to identify the dead. 

Earlier, villagers near the crash told local media that they saw flames coming from the plane’s engine before the crash.

According to flight-tracking website FlightRadar24, the plane took off around 4:41 p.m. (1311 GMT; 9:11 a.m. EST) Sunday and reached a cruising altitude of just over 35,000 feet. 

Data on the website showed that at around 6:01 p.m. (1431 GMT; 10:31 a.m. EST), something appears to have gone wrong with the flight as it rapidly gained altitude and then dropped drastically within minutes. 

According to Iranian officials, the plane took off from Sharjah International Airport and was on its way to Istanbul.

Later, Turkey’s private Dogan News Agency said that the plane was a Bombardier CL604, tail number TC-TRB. 

Turkey’s Transport Ministry also released a statement and said that the plane belongs to a company named Basaran Holding, which is active in the food, finance, energy, construction, tourism and travel industries.

Incidentally, media reports showed photos posted by the 28-year-old daughter of Basaran’s chairman, Mina Basaran on Instagram three days ago.

In the photos, Mina Basaran - who is said to be part of the company’s board of managers and is in line to run the business - is seen along with the an image of the plane that crashed.

She was believed to be at her bachelorette party in Dubai.

Further, the last videos posted to her account showed her and friends enjoying a concert by the British pop star Rita Ora at a popular Dubai nightclub. 

Since then, there has been no further activity on her Instagram account.

So far, officials have not revealed exactly who was on the plane at the time of the crash.

According to Iranian emergency management officials, however, all the passengers have been described as being young women. 

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