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30 Mar, 2008 18:50

3 dead in Russian chopper crash

Two Russians and a Ukrainian have been confirmed dead after a Russian helicopter crashed on Norway's Svalbard islands. Three others are being treated in a local hospital. There were nine people on board.

Those dead are the captain, flight navigator and a miner from Ukraine.

The MI-8 helicopter was attempting to land at the Russian settlement of Barentsburg.

According to Evgeny Kolesnikov from the Russian Embassy in Norway, the helicopter belonged to a company called Arctic Ugol.

“Rescuers, as well as Russian and Norwegian officials arrived promptly. The Russian side expresses its gratitude to Norway for friendly and prompt help,” he said.

Russian and Norwegian authorities are now investigating the reasons of the crash.