A Boeing 737 passenger plane operated by a Ukrainian airline crashed minutes after take-off from Tehran killing all on board, Iranian news agencies said Wednesday.
Iranian state television said the crash was due to technical problems. The plane was operated by Ukraine International Airline and was leaving Tehran’s Imam Khomeini International Airport.
Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelensky said that there were no survivors, Reuters reported.
There were conflicting reports about the number of people onboard. Ukraine’s foreign ministry official told Reuters that there were more than 160 passengers while Iran’s Fars News Agency said the plane was carrying 180 people.
Fars Flightradar24, a flight-tracking site, identified the plane as Flight 752, a 737-800 that was bound for the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv from Tehran. The plane stopped transmitting data about two minutes into the flight.
The 737-800 is an type of Boeing 737 that came before the 737 Max, the type that regulators grounded worldwide in March after two fatal crashes in a span of five months. The airline received this 737-800 new in 2016, according to FlightRadar24.
In a phone interview with the heads of the Civil Aviation and Emergency Management in Iran, state TV reported that the crash site was in Shahriar, near Tehran. Emergency services said the fire at the crash site was so intense that they had to halt rescue efforts.
The cause of the crash was not immediately known but Fars reported that the jet crashed due to technical problems after taking off from the Imam Khomeini international airport in Tehran, but it didn’t provide any additional detail. The Federal Aviation Administration did not immediately confirm the crash.
The airline did not immediately respond to a request for comment and more information. Ukraine International says it has 42 planes in its fleet and operates 1,110 flights a week.
“We are aware of the media reports of out Iran and we are gathering more information,” Boeing said in a statement.