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Pakistan plane crash: Fighter jet crashes near Islamabad park

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Photo of the crash taken from afar, showing plumes of smoke above the park in Shakarparian

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AFP

Image caption

The plane crashed near the Shakarparian area

An F-16 fighter jet belonging to the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) has crashed near a park in the capital Islamabad.

In a statement, the PAF said the aircraft was carrying out rehearsals for the country’s Republic Day parade to be held on 23 March.

Police and security forces have now cordoned off the site in the Shakarparian area, near several museums, golf clubs and Jinnah Stadium.

The PAF said it had ordered an inquiry into the cause of the crash.

Footage posted on social media, seemingly shot from nearby buildings, showed the moment the plane came down and smoke and flames billowing into the sky.

The fate of the pilot and co-pilot was not immediately clear.

“Pakistan Air Force reports with regret that a PAF F-16 aircraft crashed near Shakarparian, Islamabad during the rehearsals of 23 March parade,” the air force said in its statement.

“Rescue teams have been dispatched towards the site of the crash.”

It added that “a board of inquiry has been ordered by Air Headquarters to determine the cause of the incident”.

A PAF spokesman also told Reuters news agency that they were “ascertaining the losses”.



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