MNA International Desk: Algeria suffered its deadliest ever air catastrophe Wednesday when a military plane crashed after takeoff, killing 257 people on board, mostly army personnel and their family members.
Hundreds of ambulances and dozens of fire trucks with sirens wailing rushed to the scene of the crash, in an uninhabited area where one person was injured on the ground by debris.
Firefighters extinguished the blaze and security forces set up a cordon to prevent journalists and onlookers from approaching.
Witnesses who had been working in nearby fields told news agency that the plane had burst into flames before it hit the ground.
The defence ministry said in a statement that 247 passengers and 10 crew were killed without mentioning any survivors. Most of those on board were army members and their families, it said.
There was no immediate word on the cause of the crash. Deputy Defence Minister General Ahmed Gaid Salah visited the site and ordered an investigation, reported news agency.