Four killed after rescue helicopter strikes zip line in UAE’s Ras Al-Khaimah

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Horrified onlookers watch as the helicopter spins out of control after clipping a zip line. (Screengrab)
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Horrified onlookers watch as the helicopter spins out of control after clipping a zip line. (Screengrab)
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Horrified onlookers watch as the helicopter spins out of control after clipping a zip line. (Screengrab)
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The helicopter crashes into the mountain and bursts into flames. (Screengrab)
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Ras Al Khaimah’s Jebel Jais – the highest mountain in the UAE, is home to the world’s longest zipline. (Shutterstock)
Updated 30 December 2018
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Four killed after rescue helicopter strikes zip line in UAE’s Ras Al-Khaimah

  • Local media reported that the helicopter hit a zipline before crashing and bursting into flames
  • The helicopter was on a rescue mission near Jebel Jais when it crashed

DUBAI: A rescue helicopter crashed in Ras Al-Khaimah in the United Arab Emirates on Saturday evening killing all of the crew, the country’s civil aviation authority said.

Local media reported that the helicopter struck a zip line before crashing and bursting into flames. Video circulated on social media showed the helicopter spinning before it crashed into the mountain.

The dead include three Emiratis and a foreigner.

“An Agusta 139 helicopter in a rescue mission crashed in Jebel Jais area in the Emirate of Ras Al-Khaimah," state news agency WAM quoted the UAE’s General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) as saying.

Ras Al-Khaimah's ruler, Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al-Qasimi, ordered an urgent investigation into the helicopter’s crash.

He also ordered "a comprehensive investigation of the security and safety requirements in place to determine the cause of this painful incident," WAM reported.

The Agusta 139 helicopter was operated by the UAE's National Search and Rescue Center. (File photo: WAM)

The statement added that the helicopter crashed at about 5:55 p.m. local time (1:55 p.m. GMT).

An official said the helicopter from the National Search and Rescue Center was on a mission to airlift an injured man from Jebel Jais but the helicopter crashed before reaching the man.

Jebel Jais, the highest mountain in the UAE, is home to the world's longest zipline.

Jebel Jais, the highest mountain in the UAE, is home to the world's longest zipline. (Shutterstock)

The zipline, measuring 2.83 kilometers long, opened in February as part of an effort by the emirate of Ras al-Khaimah to attract more tourists and residents from neighboring emirates like Abu Dhabi and Dubai.


Security tops agenda as Iraqi PM visits Egypt in first foreign trip

Updated 23 March 2019
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Security tops agenda as Iraqi PM visits Egypt in first foreign trip

  • After meeting Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, Abdul Mahdi highlighted “the importance of drying up the sources of terrorism”
  • The visit to Egypt is Abdul Mahdi’s first trip abroad since taking office in October

CAIRO: Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi sought Egypt’s support for efforts to tackle extremist militants in the region during a visit to Cairo on Saturday, his first trip abroad since taking office in October.
After meeting Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, Abdul Mahdi highlighted “the importance of drying up the sources of terrorism” and said “cooperation between Egypt and Iraq will be essential for this matter,” according to an official statement.
His comments came as US-backed forces said they had captured Daesh’s last shred of territory in eastern Syria at Baghouz, ending its territorial rule over a self-proclaimed caliphate straddling Syria and Iraq after years of fighting.
Though the defeat ends the group’s grip over the extremist quasi-state that it declared in 2014, it remains a threat.
Some Daesh fighters still hold out in Syria’s remote central desert and in Iraqi cities they have slipped into the shadows, staging sudden shootings or kidnappings and awaiting a chance to rise again.
The United States thinks the group’s leader, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, is in Iraq.
Defeating militants in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula and restoring security after years of unrest has been a key promise of El-Sisi, the general-turned-president who came to power a year after the military overthrew Islamist President Mohammed Mursi in 2013.
Egypt has fought an insurgency waged by a Daesh affiliate in North Sinai since 2013. Hundreds of members of the security forces have been killed.