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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

270 Feared Dead in Iran Plane Crash

TEHRAN, Iran -- A plane carrying 270 passengers, most military personnel, crashed in southern Iran on Wednesday, apparently killing all on board, state-run Tehran television reported.

The plane was on a domestic route from Zahedan, on the Pakistan border, to Kerman, about 800 kilometers southeast of Tehran. It crashed in a mountainous area about 80 kilometers from its destination, near the city of Shahdad.

The television report said the plane lost contact with the control tower at 5:30 p.m. local time.

A government official, who declined to be named, said the crash appeared to have been caused by bad weather.

The television report said the plane's 270 passengers were members of the elite Revolutionary Guards. It said all on board were believed to have died in the crash.

An anonymous official told Tehran television that the forces had visited the impoverished Sistan-Baluchestan province, of which Zahedan is the capital, for an "important duty." The military corps is seen as a defender of Iran's Islamic regime.

The report said the plane was an Antonov airliner. There were no more details available on the crash.

Wednesday's crash was the latest in a string of air disasters in Iran.

A Ukrainian An-140 aircraft flew into a mountainside Dec. 23 while preparing to land at an airport near the central city of Isfahan, killing all the 46 scientists aboard.

Last February, a Russian-made Tu-154 airliner carrying 119 people smashed into snow-covered mountains not far from its destination of Khorramabad, 370 kilometers southwest of Tehran.

A Russian Yak-40 plane carrying 29 people, including Iran's Transport Minister Rahman Dadman and other deputy ministers, crashed May 17, 2001, in northern Iran killing all on board.

On Feb 2, 2000, an Iranian Air Force C-130 ran out of control while taking off at Tehran airport and crashed into an empty Iran Air A300. Both aircraft were destroyed and all six aboard the C-130 were killed.

An Iranian military plane with about 80 people on board crashed March 14, 1997, in northeastern Iran, killing all passengers and crew.

(AP, Reuters)