12 killed in fiery plane crash in Costa Rica

Costa Rica plane crashSmoke rises from wreckage after a plane crashed in the mountainous area of Punta Islita, in the province of Guanacaste, in Costa Rica December 31, 2017 in this picture obtained from social media.Ministerio de Seguridad Publica de Costa Rica/via REUTERS

  • A plane crashed in Costa Rica on Sunday, killing all 12 people on board, 10 foreign passengers and two crew members, local authorities said.
  • The crash happened near Punta Islita in the Guanacasta province according to Costa Rican officials who posted images of the burning wreckage amid a thicket of trees.
  • It was not immediately clear what caused the crash. The identities of all the passengers were not immediately known.

Costa Rican authorities said a plane crash there killed 12 people on Sunday. It happened near Punta Islita in the country’s Guanacaste province, about 140 miles west of the capital San José.

The plane was carrying 10 foreign tourists and two crew members, according to Enio Cubillo, the director of Costa Rica’s civil aviation agency. It went down in a heavily wooded area. Photos released by the country’s security ministry show the burning wreckage among a thicket of trees.

Laura Chinchilla, the former president of Costa Rica tweeted that her cousin, who was one of the crew members, died in the crash.

“There are no people alive,” Security Minister Gustavo Mata said, adding that autopsies would be needed to confirm the total number and identities of victims because their remains were badly burned.

The US State Department said it was working with Costa Rican authorities to determine if there were any US citizens on the aircraft, which was operated by the local company, Nature Air, Reuters reported.

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