NAIROBI, March 20 (Xinhua) -- A passenger aircraft crashed at South Sudan's Wau Airport and burst into flames at around 3:30 p.m. (local time) on Monday, injuring 16 people and fatality unknown, sources from UN security department at Juba said.
Sixteen people who were aboard the aircraft were identified in the Wau Teaching Hospital, the source said.
Bona Gaudenesio, Wau State Information Minister, told Xinhua by telephone that the plane crashed at Wau Airport, leaving unknown number of people dead while search for survivors had intensified.
"Yes, a plane crashed in Wau today, but we will give you concrete information later because we are still rescuing the injured," Gaudenesio said.
There were 49 people on board, according to Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), an east African regional bloc. Privately owned Eye Radio reported on its Twitter account that at least 9 people were pulled from the wreckage alive.
A source from UNMISS Military confirmed that no UN staff member was on board and it was not a terror attack. The aircraft hit an object on the ground during landing and burnt up.
Witnesses said the aircraft was burnt down in 20 minutes.
The airport is near the location of Chinese peacekeepers at Wau. After the accident happened, the Chinese peacekeepers hurried to the spot to help rescue people and put out the fire with water trucks.
The plane was travelling from the South Sudanese Capital Juba to the northern town of Wau. Local media reported that the plane owned by South Supreme Airlines.