At least 29 people have died and 50 survivors taken to hospital after a military plane transporting troops crashed in the Southern Philippines.
The Defence Secretary, Delfin Lorenzana in a statement said “At least 92 people, most of them army personnel, were on board the C-130 Hercules transport aircraft when it crashed as it tried to land on Jolo Island in Sulu province around midday on Sunday”.
The Lockheed C-130 Hercules was one of two ex-US Air Force aircraft handed over to the Philippines as part of military assistance this year was carrying troops from Cagayan de Oro on the southern island of Mindanao when it “missed the runway” as it tried to land on Jolo.
The soldiers were part of the military’s stepped-up presence in the southern Philippines to combat Islamist militants such as the Abu Sayyaf group.
A military spokesman, Colonel Edgard Arevalo, said there was no indication of any attack on the plane, but that a crash investigation had not begun and efforts were focused on rescue and treatment.
The accident comes after a Black Hawk helicopter crashed last month during a night-time training flight, killing all six on board.