Iran Aircraft killed 66 On Board, Wreckage Not Confirmed

Iranian rescue teams find site, wreckage from plane crash

In February 2017, USA senators introduced the "Iran Terror-Free Skies Act", legislation that would "counter Iran's use of commercial aircraft in support of global terrorism and state sponsors of terrorism, or for other illicit military purposes", according to a press release published on Senator Marco Rubio's website.

An Iranian ATR 72-600 passenger plane operated by Aseman Airlines and bound for the Iranian city of Yasuj disappeared from radars 50 minutes after taking off from Teheran on Sunday morning.

"We still have no access to the spot of the crash and therefore we can not accurately and definitely confirm the death of all passengers", Mr. Tabatabai told the ISNA news agency.

There were 60 passengers and six members of the crew aboard the plane. A senior official of the provincial administration in Iran Jalal Pouranfard has said that the government has dispatched a dozen rescue teams to the area where it is believed the accident happened. President Hassan Rouhani ordered the Transport Ministry to set up a crisis group to investigate the crash and coordinate rescue efforts, ISNA reported.

The ATR-72 that crashed Sunday, with the tail number EP-ATS, was built in 1993. Aseman Airlines is the third largest airline by the fleet size of Iran behind the state carrier Iran Air and Mahan Air.

The aircraft was brought back into service only months ago after being grounded for seven years. However, the President of the U.S., Donald Trump has refused to recertify this deal which has put this sales deal into uncertainty and the Iranians have been forced to continue flying their aging aircraft. However, it doesn't fly to Europe, as it was banned for safety concerns. It wasn't clear what led to the grounding, though Iran only recently regained access to the airplane parts market after the nuclear deal. 74 people lost their lives.

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In April 2017, ATR sealed a $536 million sale with Iran Air for at least 20 aircraft.

Iran has suffered several plane crashes in the past few decades.

The worldwide community grieved over the air crash.

In February 2003, an Ilyushin-76 troop carrier crashed in southeast Iran, killing all 276 Revolutionary Guard soldiers and crew.

The flight, which departed at 7:55 a.m. local time (11.25 p.m. ET Saturday), crashed in Kohangan village, 120 kilometers (74 miles) from Semirom town, authorities told Iran's Fars News Agency.

The plane that crashed, pictured in Dubai on an unknown date.

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