Europe

Missing plane wreck found in Russia's Urals Mountains

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Media captionAmateur footage shows the wreckage of what is believed to be the missing plane. Courtesy of Dmitry Skryabin/Serovglobus.ru

Hunters in the Ural Mountains of Russia have discovered the wreckage of a light aircraft that went missing with 13 people nearly a year ago.

The two hunters spotted the debris in marshland near an airfield in the town of Serov, from where the plane had taken off without permission last June.

Eleven bodies have also been recovered near the crash site.

The official search for the plane lasted four months and covered an area of 1m sq km (400,000 sq miles).

But rescuers were forced to call off the search last November as winter closed in.

The grouse hunters found the charred An-2 biplane about 8km (5 miles) from the airfield on Saturday evening.

It was suspected that the pilot had taken the biplane for an unauthorised flight with a group of friends, with whom he had been drinking - including the chief of the local traffic police.

Investigators suspected they were heading for a fishing expedition or sauna visit when the aircraft came down shortly after take-off.

There is no word on the cause of the crash.

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