Plane crash kills two in Hong Kong.pdf by lovemacromastia


									PAGE 10A                                                                                            Laredo Morning Times                                Monday, August 23, 1999


Plane crash kills two in Hong Kong
BY PRISCILLA CHEUNG                               and the landing gear pointed up into the            storm.
Associated Press Writer                           night sky under huge spotlights set up by             But as the plane flew nearer to Hong
                                                  rescuers.                                           Kong, the winds seemed calm enough to
  HONG KONG — A China Airlines jet burst            Passenger Joemy Tam described a har-              land, the officials said, quoting an account
into flames, flipped upside down and slid         rowing landing in the storm, which had ear-         from the co-pilot, Liu Cheng-hsi.
down the runway at Hong Kong’s new air-           lier limited operations at Chek Lap Kok air-          Liu said the plane’s right wing dipped
port Sunday while trying to land in a tropical    port.                                               about 15 degrees as the airplane
storm, killing two people and injuring at least     “The airplane tried to lift up, but somehow       approached the runway and was hit by a
206, officials said.                              it couldn’t,” Tam told Radio Hong Kong. “On         side wind, but the pilot, C.A. Lettich, did not
  The jet’s right wing dipped and struck the      the right-hand side, the wing hit the ground        alter his course and the wing soon dipped a
runway, breaking off as the airplane caught       and I saw the explosion, the fire, coming all       second time, striking the runway and catch-
fire, officials told reporters. Witnesses said    the way from the front of the plane to the          ing fire.
the jet was ablaze before it hit the ground —     rear.”                                                Witnesses at the airport said the jet
an account disputed by Hong Kong officials          Passengers found themselves dangling in           appeared to be in trouble before it touched
and China Airlines.                               the air, strapped into seats that had been          down.
  The crash was a major setback for the air-      turned upside down. Tam said he freed him-            “I saw the plane, like a fireball, coming
line, which has struggled in recent years to      self, then helped the person next to him get        down,” said Toshi Hoshino, a businessman
overcome a poor safety record and a repu-         loose. Stunned passengers, some of them             from Osaka, Japan, who was changing air-
tation for arrogant and undisciplined pilots.     burned, were screaming as they made their           planes in Hong Kong. “The right wing hit the
  Flight CI642 from Bangkok, Thailand,            way out onto a runway drenched with jet             ground first. The left side of the body then
was thrown off balance by “an overly hard         fuel.                                               followed.”
side wind” as the pilot tried to land the MD-       “I saw two ladies lying on the floor, actual-       Hong Kong officials said the airport was
11 jet during Tropical Storm Sam, said            ly lying on the ceiling,” Tam said.                 kept open during the tropical storm in accor-
Scott Shih, a spokesman for China                   Taiwanese aviation officials said the cock-       dance with international aviation standards.
Airlines at the carrier’s headquarters in         pit crew had originally decided to fly straight       “The decision to land or not to land lies
Taipei, Taiwan.                                   from Bangkok to Taipei, skipping a sched-           with the airline,” said Albert Lam, director of
  After the crash, the plane’s body was intact    uled stop in Hong Kong because of the               Hong Kong’s Civil Aviation Department.

Russian prime minister, defense
chiefs discuss Dagestan fighting
BY ANGELA CHARLTON                    1994-96 war with separatists in      Magomedov.
Associated Press Writer               Chechnya. The Kremlin is pour-         In Dagestan, federal troops
                                      ing troops and weaponry into         were in partial control of Tando
  MOSCOW — Russia’s prime             Dagestan but wants to avoid a        and were widening their grip on
minister summoned defense             repeat of the Chechnya deba-         the area, Lt. Col. Viktor Gubriy
and law enforcement chiefs            cle, particularly ahead of           of the Defense Ministry said
Sunday to review their cam-           December parliamentary elec-         from      Dagestan’s      capital,
paign against Islamic militants       tions.                               Makhachkala.
occupying southern villages —           Prime Minister Vladimir Putin        The military command and
a campaign that has failed to         called an unusual meeting            Dagestan’s Interior Ministry said
dislodge the rebels despite two       Sunday of Russia’s “power min-       28 guerrillas were killed in fight-
weeks of attacks.                     isters”: Defense Minister Igor       ing Saturday over the Kharami
  The meeting in Moscow came          Sergeyev; Interior Minister          pass, used to ferry fighters and
after Russian forces chalked up       Vladimir Rushailo, in charge of      weapons from Chechnya.
some victories in the republic of     the police force; the head of the      The number of Russian casu-
Dagestan. They said Sunday            Federal Security Service, the        alties in the clashes Saturday
they captured parts of a rebel        main successor to the KGB,           and Sunday was unclear. The
stronghold a day after seizing a      Nikolai Petrushev; and the chief     Defense Ministry reported one
key rebel supply route.               of the armed forces general          officer killed Saturday.
  Control over the Tando moun-        staff, Gen. Anatoly Kvashnin.          Russian officials say up to 700
taintop and the Kharami moun-           They discussed strategy, spe-      rebels have been killed in the
tain pass leading to neighboring      cific    military     operations,    two-week conflict, though the
breakaway Chechnya is seen            Russia’s political situation and     rebels say the figure is hugely
as vital for the militants. The       aid to refugees, Russian news        exaggerated. Moscow has
strength of the Russian posi-         agencies reported.                   acknowledged losing about 40
tions was unclear, and the tena-        Russia has also appealed to        soldiers.
cious rebels have recaptured          the United States, Israel, Saudi       Russian commanders have
ground before.                        Arabia and Turkey for intelli-       been predicting the militants’
  The rebels crossed from             gence on the rebels, Rushailo        imminent defeat for days, but
Chechnya to seize several vil-        said on Russian television           the fighting has dragged on.
lages in Dagestan on Aug. 7.          Sunday.                              President Yeltsin’s spokesman
They are seeking an indepen-            Putin — a former national          Dmitry Yakushkin conceded
dent Muslim state in the              security chief who was named         Saturday, “It’s impossible to
Caucasus Mountains region.            prime minister a week after this     expect a quick solution.”
  The fighting is the worst in        month’s fighting began — met
Russia since federal troops           later Sunday with the head of
withdrew in humiliation after a       Dagestan,           Magomedali

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