- Title: IN AIR/ LEBANON: VICTIMS OF BENIN AIR CRASH ARRIVE BACK IN LEBANON
- Date: 27th December 2003
- Summary: (W2)IN AIR (DECEMBER 27, 2003) (REUTERS) 1. CLOSE OF INJURED MAN BEING TREATED/ GIVEN OXYGEN 0.14 2. WIDE OF INJURED IN PLANE EN ROUTE TO LEBANON 0.23 3. SCU INJURED MAN SEATED IN PLANE 0.26 4. WIDE OF INTERIOR OF AIRCRAFT WITH INJURED 0.30 5. PAN FROM MEDICAL DRIP TO VARIOUS OF INJURED MAN (3 SHOTS) 0.49 6. SMV INJURED WOMAN ATTACHED TO MEDICAL DRIP 0.57 7. SMV MEDICS MONITORED INJURED ON PLANE (3 SHOTS) 1.12 8. SMV MAN AND CHILD ON PLANE 1.19 9. CLOSE OF MONITORING EQUIPMENT 1.24 10. WIDE OF MEDICAL STAFF MONITORING CASUALTY 1.29 11. SCU INJURED MAN (2 SHOTS) 1.38 (W2)BEIRUT, LEBANON (DECEMBER 27, 2003) (REUTERS) (NIGHT SCENES) 12. VARIOUS PLANE TAXIING ON RUNWAY AFTER LANDING (4 SHOTS) 2.03 13. VARIOUS OF AMBULANCES WAITING ON RUNWAY (2 SHOTS) 2.13 14. VARIOUS OF PLANE DOOR OPENING (2 SHOTS) 2.26 15. SLV RELATIVES ARRIVING AT AIRPORT (2 SHOTS) 2.34 16. CLOSE OF PLANE WINDOWS 2.41 17. VARIOUS OF MEDICAL TEAMS TRANSPORTING INJURED FROM PLANE TO AMBULANCES (4 SH0TS) 3.21 18. SLV AMBULANCES BY PLANE 3.27 19. SLV AMBULANCE DRIVING AWAY 3.20 20. SCU (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) UNIDENTIFIED MAN WHO LOST HIS FAMILY IN PLANE CRASH, SAYING: "This plane is not registered in Lebanon, it had requested registration but was refused and did not get a license from Lebanon, and yet it has two travel offices open in Lebanon and has made several trips. If they know that the plane is not fit to fly then why do they let our people use it?" 3.51 21. SLV INJURED BEING TAKEN FROM PLANE 3.57 22. SCU (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) UNIDENTIFIED MAN WHO LOST HIS FAMILY IN PLANE CRASH, SAYING: "My wife and two children were on the plane, and my wife was pregnant. And they all died. I spent years living and working abroad all for what?" 4.15 23. SMV OFFICIALS 4.18 24. SCU (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) LEBANESE FOREIGN MINISTER JEAN OBEID SAYING: "Today...we didn't bring any bodies with us, we only brought with us the injured. The bodies are still in the process of being identified as per the manifesto of the airline company and I think that the identification process will end by today or tomorrow." 4.39 25. SMV LEBANESE FOREIGN MINISTER JEAN OBEID ON MOBILE PHONE 4.44 Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
- Reuters ID: LVABYUH9ZXXDZPDBFBPOCY2DBPY2
- Location: IN AIR/BEIRUT, LEBANON
- Country: Lebanon
- Duration: 00:04:48
- Story Text: The 15 survivors of the UTA plane crash arrived at
Beirut International Airport early Saturday.
The 15 survivors of the UTA plane crash arrived at
Beirut International Airport early Saturday morning
The plane touched down at the airport shortly after 4am
local time as ambulances waited on the side of the runway
to take the injured to nearby hospitals that have been
placed on alert.
The injured included Lebanese nationals as well as two
Palestinians and one Syrian national.
Lebanese Foreign Minister Jean Obeid flew into Benin
with a team of diplomats, medical officers and divers on
Friday and met the former French colony's president.
"Today...we didn't bring any bodies with us, we only
brought with us the injured. The bodies are still in the
process of being identified as per the manifesto of the
airline company and I think that the identification process
will end by today or tomorrow," Obeid told reporters at the
Survivors grappled with horrifying memories and
grieving relatives prepared to take the bodies of loved
ones home on Friday (December 26) after an airliner smashed
into the sea off Benin, killing at least 119 people.
More were believed missing. Benin's foreign minister
said there had been 151 passengers and 10 crew on the
Beirut-bound plane which crashed moments after take-off
from the West African nation's main city of Cotonou on
Twenty-two people survived the crash and the search for
bodies in choppy sea waters continued late on Friday.
By nightfall, rescuers had managed to pull the plane's
wreckage out of the Atlantic Ocean. The airliner smashed
into a building at the end of the runway as it struggled to
take off before plunging into the shallow coastal waters.
At a nearby hospital, relatives and friends of the dead
climbed one by one into the back of a refrigerated truck to
Survivors from the back of the plane said they were
haunted by screams that rent the air around them as flight
UTA 141 went down, spewing bodies and debris onto the
One survivor, who lost his wife and children cried
hysterically: "My wife and two children were on the plane,
and my wife was pregnant. And they all died. I spent years
living and working abroad all for what?!"
The Boeing 727 was carrying many Lebanese passengers
heading home for the holidays, as well as people from
Benin, Guinea and Sierra Leone.
A Lebanese official in Benin said 119 bodies had been
recovered. By Friday afternoon, 15 of the Lebanese dead had
been identified and the bodies placed in coffins to be
But officials said the bodies would not be flown out
until formalities had been completed. Survivors were due to
leave for Lebanon on a government-chartered plane later on
Airport officials said the plane had trouble retracting
its undercarriage after take-off. The police opened an
Lebanese communities form the backbone of some
economies in West Africa, running small shops and
businesses in many nations.
As night fell, boats carrying Lebanese divers in black
wetsuits bounced over the waves searching for the missing.
Local rescue workers watched from the shore, where
hundreds of onlookers had started pulling pieces of metal
from the gutted fuselage that lay on the sand, spilling out
wires and debris.
Guinea's Transport Minister Cellou Dalein Diallo said
the plane was first used by the Guinean-registered company
Union des Transporteurs Africains (UTA) in September this
year. It had previously been used by American Airlines and
It was the third crash this year in Africa in which
planes have plunged to the ground shortly after take-off.
The deputy superintendent at Conakry airport said the
Lebanese man who chartered the plane had been on board with
his wife and child.
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