ARMAVIA'S A-320 PASSENGER PLANE CRASHES NEAR SOCHI

AZG Armenian Daily
03/05/2006

ARMENIAN DEFENCE MINISTER GOES TO SOCHI TO INVESTIGATE INTO CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE A-320 CRASH

Yerevan, May 3. ArmInfo. Armenian President Robert Kocharyan held
an extraordinary meeting in connection with the crash of Armavia's
A-320 plane in Sochi.

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Attending the meeting were Prime Minister Andranik Margaryan, Defence
Minister Serzh Sargsyan, Territorial Administration Minister Hovik
Abrahamyan, Prosecutor General Agvan Hovsepyan, Chief of Police Hayk
Haroutyunyan, Chief of National Security Service Gorik Hakopyan,
Head of Chief Department of Civil Aviation Artem Movsissyan.

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The presidential press service says that Movsissyan reported to
the president on the crash. Kocharyan instructed Defence Minister,
Co-Chair of Armenian-Russian Inter-Governmental Commission Serzh
Sargsyan to go to Sochi to inquire into the circumstances of the
tragedy. A special commission led by Territorial Administration
Minister Hovik Abrahamyan will bring the bodies of the victims to
Armenia and will organize their funerals.

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Prosecu tor General Agvan Hovsepyan said that his office has instituted
a criminal action. Earlier the prosecutor's office of Krasnodar region
(Russia) instituted criminal proceedings according to article 263
of Russia's Criminal Code (violation of the rules of security during
aircraft operation causing the death of two and more people).

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To remind, Armavia's A-320 plane flying from Yerevan to Sochi crashed
near Sochi 02:15 AM. 113 people (6 children) were onboard. 26 of
them were Russian citizens, 1 woman was from Ukraine, the rest were
Armenian citizens.

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Armavia has opened a hot-line in Yerevan: (+37410) 28-63-56.

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To remind, June 2005 100% of Armavia's shares were bought by President
of Mika Armenia Trading Mikhail Bagdassarov. In 2005 Armavia's
passenger turnover was 507,000 people against 380,000 in 2004. In 2004
the crashed A-320 was leased from Vermille International Services B.V.

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77 ARMENIAN AND 28 RUSSIAN CITIZENS WERE ONBOARD THE CRASHED ARMAVIA
PLANE

Yerevan, May 3. ArmInfo. 77 Armenian citizens and 28 Russian citizens,
mostly of Armenian origin, were onboard Armavia's A-320 plane which
crashed 5 km of Sochi this night, says the head of the chief department
of civil aviation of Armenia Artem Movsissyan.

A total of 113 people were onboard, with the bodies of only 18 ones
found to date.

Movsissyan says that the plane took off from Yerevan 01:47 AM. Because
of bad weather over Georgia the captain decided to go back to Yerevan,
but the controller said that the weather was improving and the plane
could land in Sochi. 03:15 AM the plane disappeared.

According to the preliminary information, the plane crashed because
of bad weather, but the final answer will be given only after the
investigation. Movsissyan says that before the flight the plane was
in normal technical condition and its 10 tons of fuel were enough for
coming back to Yerevan - from Yerevan to Sochi a plane consumes only
3.5 tons of fuel.

Movsissyan says that A-320 was produced in 1995 and was insured.

Today the Armenian President called a meeting and gave instructions to
relevant services. One more Armavia plane with relatives and experts
onboard flew to Sochi today morning.

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ARMAVIA' S A-320 PASSENGER PLANE CRASHES NEAR SOCHI

Yerevan, May 3. ArmInfo. A-320 plane of the Armavia company (Armenia)
crashed near Sochi (Russia) today 03:38 AM.

The press secretary of the chief department of civil aviation of
Armenia Gayane Davtyan says that the plane with 105 people onboard
was flying from Yerevan to Sochi. When approaching Sochi, because of
bad weather, the crew was told to make one more turn and suddently
disappeared. Some time later its debris were found in the sea.

According to the preliminary information, all passengers and crew -
65 men, 36 women, 6 children and 8 pilots died.

Davtyan says that 9 experts have gone to Sochi to inquire into the
circumstances of the crash.

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18 BODIES OF PASSENGERS OF ARMAVIA'S CRASHED PLANE FOUND IN BLACK SEA

Yerevan, May 3. ArmInfo. 18 bodies of passengers of the crashed A-320
plane of the Armavia company (Armenia) have been found in the Black
Sea, report Russian sources. Also found are debris, fragments of
bodies, baggage. The plane fell 300 meters deep into the sea.

It was produced by Airbus Industry, the biggest European concern,
in 1987 for short and medium distance flight. It flew for the first
time Feb 22 1987.

The search is underway. The plane was making a crash landing. It
flew from Yerevan to Sochi and got lost from radars 02:15 AM. The
prosecutor's office of Sochi has instituted criminal proceedings in
the case "violation of the rules of aircraft exploitation."

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AR MENIAN PRESIDENT EXTENDS HIS CONDOLENCES TO RELATIVES AND FRIENDS
OF THOSE KILLED IN TODAY'S AIR CRASH

Yerevan, May 3. ArmInfo. Armenian President Robert Kocharyan extended
his deep condolences to the relatives and friends of the passengers
and the pilots of the Armavia's plane that crashed today night while
flying from Yerevan to Sochi.

"I was deeply grieved to learn about the night crash.

I extend my deepest condolences to the relatives and friends of the
passengers and the pilots. I assure that all the aggrieved families
will be provided with support and our authorities will do their best
to find out the reasons of the crash," says Kocharyan.