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Expert says Tu-154 wreckage may be recovered from Black Sea in week's time

December 25, 2016, 15:17 UTC+3 SOCHI

The Defense Ministry said that debris from the Tu-154 aircraft was found 1.5 km off the coast of Sochi at the depth of 50-70 meters

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© Artur Lebedev/ТАSS

SOCHI, December 25. /TASS/. Debris from the Tu-154 plane which crashed off Sochi's coast can be recovered from the depths of the sea within a week under favorable weather conditions, the head of the monitoring service of the All-Russia Water Rescue Society told TASS on Sunday.

"Depths of 50-70 meters are not that submerged and major fragments can be recovered with the help of soft pontoons," Vladimir Gritsikhin said, adding that the water temperature at this depth is always above zero.

"I think that all the fragments can be recovered in a week if all services work promptly," he said. "The weather is fine now and we should utilize it."

A Tu-154 plane from Russia's Defense Ministry vanished from radars at 05.40 a.m. Moscow time (02.40 a.m. GMT) shortly after taking off from Sochi. There were 92 people onboard the plane, including journalists, servicemen and musicians of the famous Alexandrov ensemble, an official army choir of the Russian armed forces, who set off to celebrate the New Year with the air group of Russia’s Aerospace Forces at the Hmeymim air base in Syria. The Executive Director of the Spravedlivaya Pomoshch (Fair Aid) charity fund Elizaveta Glinka, known to the Russian public as Dr. Liza, was also onboard.

The Defense Ministry said that debris from the Tu-154 aircraft was found 1.5 km off the coast of Sochi at the depth of 50-70 meters. Ten of the victims’ bodies have already been recovered.

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