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Rescuers find 12 bodies of Superjet crash victims in Indonesia Fri

May 12, 2012, 15:21 UTC+3

One of the crash victims has been identified

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BANGKOK, May 12 (Itar-Tass) — Helicopters have resumed the operation to evacuate the remains of those killed in the crash of Russia's Sukhoi Superjet 100 airliner in Indonesia that were found on Friday. At dawn on Saturday the helicopters flew to Mount Salak into which the Russian airliner crashed on Wednesday.

On Friday, rescuers found 12 bodies in the plane crash area. Rescuers by hand took the remains in special body bags to the Summit-1 intermediate base arranged on Mount Salak. The bodies’ evacuation operation from the mountain was suspended on Friday at nightfall.

Eko Prasetyo, a volunteer participating in the search and rescue operation, said that the rescuers have “not found a single intact body.” “All was scattered, we saw injuries and burns,” he told the Jakarta Post newspaper in an interview. According to him, the rescuers’ team spotted more body parts and plane debris 200 to 300 metres lower the place where they found the first body parts.

The rescue team’s representative said that one of the crash victims has been identified by “a citizenship card inside the wallet in the trousers pocket belonging to Kornel Sihombing.”

Prasetyo said that “many ATM and citizenship cards in the vicinity, and a plane seat with a parachute attached to it” scattered in the crash area have been spotted. “But there was nothing on the seat,” said the local volunteer.

On Friday, chief of the Indonesian National Police’s disaster victim identification unit, Anton Castilani, said the autopsies and identification procedures of the crash victims can take up to a month. As for the intact bodies that can be identified and the remains the identification of which is possible without complex and lengthy DNA procedures, they will be handed over to the relatives immediately, he said. However, the bodies that cannot be identified otherwise will be handed over to their loved ones only after the DNA identification procedure by the samples provided by the relatives, the medic said.

Russia’s Sukhoi Superjet 100 airliner crashed during a demonstration flight. According to available information, there were 45 people on board, including eight Russians, as well as citizens of Indonesia, France and the United States. The crash site was spotted not far from the capital of Indonesia, in rough terrain on a slope of Mount Salak at an altitude of 1.5 kilometres. Indonesian rescuers have been working in the area of the catastrophe.


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