Indian authorities say no survivors of air force plane crash

There were no survivors of a military transport plane crash last week in a mountainous area near the border with China. (File/AFP)
Updated 13 June 2019
0

Indian authorities say no survivors of air force plane crash

  • The AN-32 plane with five Indian air force officers and eight people of other ranks lost ground contact June 3 on its way to a high-altitude airstrip in Mechuka, 29 kilometers from the Chinese border
  • Even after deploying satellites and sensitive radars, it took nine days for air force and navy personnel to locate the wreckage because of the remoteness of the heavily forested area

GAHUATI, India: There were no survivors of a military transport plane crash last week in a mountainous area near the border with China, Indian authorities said Thursday.
A team of rescuers airlifted to a place lower on the mountain in Arunachal Pradesh, India's northeastern-most state, climbed up to the crash site on foot early Thursday and confirmed that none of the 13 people on board were alive, the Indian air force said on Twitter.
"Our rescue team reached the site at an elevation of 12,000 feet (3,658 meters) this morning and did not find survivors," said Indian Air Force Wing Commander Ratnakar Singh.
The AN-32 plane with five Indian air force officers and eight people of other ranks lost ground contact June 3 on its way to a high-altitude airstrip in Mechuka, 29 kilometers (18 miles) from the Chinese border.
Even after deploying satellites and sensitive radars, it took nine days for air force and navy personnel to locate the wreckage because of the remoteness of the heavily forested area.
The air force released a photo of a charred patch of land on a steep slope covered with evergreen trees, leading to speculation that the plane crashed just below the summit.
Officials have not said what caused the crash.


G20 set to agree on marine plastic pollution deal

Updated 16 June 2019
0

G20 set to agree on marine plastic pollution deal

  • Plastic pollution has become an increasing international concern
  • Among the many concerns is the issue of microplastics, the tiny pieces of degraded waste that are difficult to collect once they enter the water

TOKYO: The Group of 20 major economies were set to agree a deal on reducing marine plastic waste at a meeting in Japan Sunday where they also discussed energy security following the oil tanker attacks in the Gulf of Oman.
Japan “proposed a workable framework” on marine plastic waste that involves emerging and less developed countries, and was welcomed by member countries, environment minister Yoshiaki Harada told reporters late Saturday at the G20 environment and energy ministers’ meeting.
Plastic pollution has become an increasing international concern, particularly after bans imposed by China and other countries on the import of plastic waste from overseas.
Many countries, including Japan, have seen plastic waste pile up in the wake of the ban.
Among the many concerns is the issue of microplastics, the tiny pieces of degraded waste that are difficult to collect once they enter the water.
Microplastics tend to absorb harmful chemicals and accumulate inside fish, birds and other animals.
The proposal, made at the two-day meeting in the central mountain resort of Karuizawa, would be the first-ever framework to reduce plastic pollution in the ocean, and is expected to be included in a joint communique by the G20 ministers later Sunday.
Under the expected agreement, G20 members would commit to undertaking efforts to reduce the amount of plastic waste that ends up polluting oceans and to reporting their progress on a regular basis, according to Japanese media.
If an international framework on reducing marine plastic waste is agreed, it would be “the first step toward resolving the issue,” Hiroaki Odachi of Greenpeace Japan told AFP.
“But given the critical situation of ocean pollution with plastics, it is urgently needed to set up legally binding action plans with clear timelines and goals,” he added.
With only an estimated nine percent of plastics ever produced recycled, campaigners say the only long-term solution to the plastic waste crisis is for companies to make less and consumers to use less.
Japanese industry minister Hiroshige Seko, who is co-chairing the discussions with Harada, said late Saturday that Japan would aim to require businesses to charge for disposable shopping bags by as early as April to help reduce waste.
Many countries in the world already charge for single-use bags or ban them outright.
On energy security, Seko said Tokyo “is watching with grave concerns at the attacks on oil tankers by someone.”
“From a viewpoint of global energy security, it is necessary for the international community to jointly deal with the act,” Seko told the meeting.
The ministers agreed on the importance of securing stable energy supplies, he said.