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Pope Francis offers condolences to victims of plane crash in Tanzania

Rescuers attempt to recover the Precision Air passenger plane that crashed into Lake Victoria in Bukoba, Tanzania. (Photo courtesy of EPA)

Pope Francis offers condolences and prayer support to all victims of the plane crash in Tanzania on Sunday.

“Having learned with sadness of the plane crash in Bukoba, Pope Francis sends condolences and offers the assurance of his spiritual closeness to all those affected by this tragedy, especially the families of the victims,” the message reads.

This message was sent in a telegram message to the Apostolic Nunciature in Tanzania and signed by Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin.

Pope Francis prayed “in particular for the eternal repose of the deceased, the healing of the injured, and strength for those involved in the rescue and recovery efforts.”

The Pope invoked the consolation and peace of Almighty God upon all.

A commercial flight operated by Precision Air crashed on Sunday morning into Lake Victoria while approaching Bukoba airport in Tanzania due to the bad weather.

Kagera province police commander William Mwampaghale told journalists, “We have managed to save quite a number of people. When the aircraft was about 100 meters (328 feet) in midair, it encountered problems and bad weather. It was raining and the plane plunged into the water.”

CNN reported that 19 people were killed in the tragedy and 24 people were rescued. 39 passengers and 4 crews were on board during this flight.

The flight had taken off from Tanzania’s capital of Dar es Salaam and was headed to Bukoba before it crashed into Lake Victoria.

On Monday during the funeral service in Bukoba, Tanzanian Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa said, “I want to ensure to everyone that [our] air transport is the safest. Yesterday's was a tragic accident that we believe will never happen again.” - With inputs from Vatican News


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