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Ukrainians bringing flowers to Russian embassy in memory of those killed in Tu-154 crash

December 25, 2016, 16:22 UTC+3 KIEV

Ukraine’s official authorities have not yet expressed any reaction to the crash

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© Russian embassy in Kiev/TASS

KIEV, December 25. /TASS/. Ukrainians are bringing flowers to the Russian embassy in Kiev as a gesture of condolences over the crash of the Russian Tu-154 plane in the Black Sea near the city of Sochi, embassy spokesman Oleg Grishin told TASS on Sunday.

"People are bringing flowers to the Russian embassy," he said.

Ukraine’s official authorities have demonstrated no response to the crash.

A Tu-154 plane from Russia’s Ministry of Defense vanished from radar screens at 05.40 a.m. Moscow time (02.40 a.m. GMT) shortly after taking off from the Black Sea resort of Sochi.

According to the latest information from Russia's Defense Ministry, there were 92 people on board the aircraft, consisting of 8 crew members and 84 passengers. Among them was the Executive Director of the Spravedlivaya Pomoshch (Fair Aid) charity fund, Elizaveta Glinka, also better known to the Russian public as Dr. Liza, as well as servicemen and reporters, including from Channel One, Zvezda and NTV.

The plane was also carrying more than 60 members 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 choir’s conductor Valery Khalilov was also on the list of passengers.

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

Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev to set up and head a government commission to look into the Tu-154 plane crash. The Investigative Committee announced that a criminal case was opened based on "the violation of rules of flights safety or preparation for them.".

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