Africa

200 feared dead in Congo air disaster

There is confusion over the death toll in an air disaster in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where many passengers have fallen out of a cargo plane.

The government says 60 people were sucked out of the aircraft. Airport officials say 129. But survivors say the toll could be as high as 200, as the plane was overcrowded. The Ukrainian Ilyushin had been chartered by the military to fly from Kinshasa to Congo's second city, Lubumbashi. As military helicopters continued the search for bodies, survivors said the plane's rear door had burst open. They clung to bags, ropes and netting for almost two hours to stop themselves being sucked out of the aircraft as it flew back to Kinshasa airport. Meanwhile, UN workers in the north-east of the country say 14 people have been massacred in continuing ethnic violence in the town of Bunia. They say two priests were among the victims.

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