Iran jet crashes after take-off, killing 48
An Iranian passenger plane has crashed while taking off from an airport near the capital Tehran, killing 48 people on board.
State-run news agency IRNA said the aircraft, an Iran-140 typically used for short domestic flights, crashed near Mehrabad airport, west of Tehran. The plane went down in a residential area after its engine failed.
Iranian state television said 48 people were killed in the crash: 40 passengers and eight crew members. The plane, operated by Sepahan Air, was heading to Tabas, a town in eastern Iran. It took off at 9.20am local time and crashed shortly afterwards.
The Iran-140 is a 52-seat passenger plane produced in Iran with Ukrainian technology.
Iran has suffered a series of plane crashes, blamed on its ageing aircraft and poor maintenance. Many of the Boeing aircraft in state-run Iran Air's fleet were bought before the country's 1979 Islamic Revolution, which disrupted ties with the US and Europe.
US sanctions prevent Iran from updating its US aircraft and make it difficult to get European spare parts or planes as well. The country has come to rely on Russian aircraft, many of them Soviet-era planes that are harder to get parts for since the Soviet Union's breakup.
The last major airliner crash in Iran was in January 2011, when an Iran Air Boeing 727 broke into pieces on impact while attempting an emergency landing in north-western Iran, killing at least 77 people.