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Small plane crashes into building in Ecuador
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A small military plane crashed into a building in the capital city on Thursday, killing seven people, five on board and two on the ground.

Fire engulfs a building after a plane crashed on its roof in Quito March 19, 2009. At least five people were killed when the Ecuadorean military plane crashed into two buildings on Thursday in the fog-bound capital city Quito, authorities said. [Xinhua]

The army said three military personnel aboard were killed: the pilot, a major, the co-pilot, a lieutenant and the mechanic, a sergeant. Two civilians on the plane and two on the ground were also killed.

Red Cross officials said there might be more people under the fuselage.

Local reports said the Beechcraft army plane hit part of one building in the northern part of the city before crashing into another building.

The site was near to US ambassador's residence in Quito and the ambassador was unharmed.

The tragedy occurred at 5:30 p.m. local time (2230 GMT) when the city was still blanketed by heavy fog. Fog is often the cause of aviation difficulties here.

Images of the Ecuadoran TV showed that there was fire ensuing the crash with a building close to Quito Hotel. AP reports said explosions were also heard inside the building.

Officials said the jet was on a training mission before it fell down.

Policemen had cordoned off the site and fire had been put out. Authorities were searching the black box.

Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa later went to the site to find out more about the accident, reports said.

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