One of the two survivors of a Ukrainian military plane crash died in hospital as the death count climbed to 26 on Saturday after three more bodies were found.President Volodymyr Zelensky arrived at the scene of the tragedy near the eastern city of Kharkiv where an Antonov-26 transport plane carrying 20 young cadets and seven crew members crashed Friday evening.
The plane burst into flames on landing around two kilometers (more than one mile) from Chuguiv military airbase.Firefighters extinguished the blaze after an hour.
Twenty-two were confirmed dead and two people survived.On Saturday three more bodies were found and one of the two survivors died in hospital.
Ukraine has lost 26 worthy sons,” Zelensky posted on Facebook, declaring Saturday a day of mourning.“Twenty-five died on the spot,” he said, adding one more cadet died in hospital from extensive burns.“It is difficult to find words to express the pain of this loss.” Zelensky said the cause of the crash should be quickly established and called for an “objective” investigation.
Ukraine’s SBU security service said the plane was performing a training flight but the cadets of the Kharkiv National Air Force University were not involved in piloting it.