The Naoriobi-bound Boeing 737-800
MAX, which crashed near Bishoftu (Debre
Zeit) inside Ethiopia, six minutes
after take-off en route to Kenya,
was carrying 149 passengers and
eight crew members.
"We are saddened by the news of
an Ethiopian Airlines passenger
aircraft that is reported to have
crashed six minutes after takeoff en
route to Kenya.
"My prayers go to all the
families and associates of those on
board," Kenyatta said.
Similar messages came from
African Union envoy for
infrastructure Raila Odinga and
deputy president William Ruto.
Meanwhile, James Macharia,
cabinet secretary for transport and
infrastructure, said the government
has set up two emergency centers to
counsel those affected by the
tragedy as it awaits for the
manifest of the crashed plane.
Macharia directed families of the
passengers on the crashed flight ET
302 to the two centres at Terminal
1D and Four Points hotel within the
He said the centres will offer
privacy and information to relatives
of crash victims as the government
waits for the plane’s manifest from
the Ethiopian carrier.
"The purpose of these centers is
to provide the relatives, who we
call meeters and greeters, with
information as much as we have and,
at the same time, to provide them
with an environment of privacy
because until we know what has
happened there will be a lot of
anxiety," he told a news conference
Kenya sends team to
Ethiopia after 32 nationals perish in plane crash
NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya said on Sunday it has sent a team to
Ethiopia to deal with the aftermath of an Ethipian Airlines jet
crash that killed all 157 aboard, including 32 Kenyan nationals.
"There were at least thirty-five nationalities and
regrettably Kenya is the highest with 32 passengers on board,"
James Macharia, cabinet secretary for transport and
infrastructure, told a news conference in Nairobi.
The government is now focusing more on the welfare of the
victims’ friends and relatives who are now within the vicinity
of the airport, he said.
Tewolde Gebremariam, CEO of Ethiopian Airlines Group, told a
press conference in Addis Ababa that the victims also include 18
from Canada, nine from Ethiopia, eight each from China, Italy
and the United States, seven each from Britain and France, six
from Egypt, and five from the Netherlands.
They also include four each from India and Slovakia, three
each from Austria, Russia and Sweden, two each from Israel,
Morocco, Poland and Spain, and one each from Belgium, Djibouti,
Indonesia, Ireland, Mozambique, Nepal, Nigeria, Norway, Rwanda,
Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Slovenia, Somalia, Sudan, Togo, Uganda,
and Yemen, Gebremariam said.
The aircraft, a Boeing 737-800 MAX, took off at 08:38 a.m.
local time Sunday from Addis Ababa Bole International Airport
and lost contact at 08:44 a.m., and crashed around Bishoftu
town, some 45 km from the capital Addis Ababa, the airline said.
"At this stage, we cannot determine the cause of the
accident," Gebremariam said.
The aircraft, which was obtained by the Ethiopian airline
last November, has only been in service for four months, flying
more than 1,200 hours until Sunday’s crash, according to the
The flight’s captain, Yared Mulugeta, has been working with
the airline since 2010, Gebremariam said.
"He is a senior pilot with more than 8,000 hours," the CEO
"Today is a very sad and tragic day for all of us,"