The Latest: 20-plus journalists said aboard crashed plane


BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — The Latest on the Colombia plane crash involving members of a Brazilian soccer team (all times local):

11:05 a.m.

The plane carrying a Brazilian soccer team that crashed in Colombia was also transporting many journalists covering the team.

Colombian aviation authorities say 21 journalists were among the 81 passengers. Only one of the journalists is listed as surviving.

The journalists came from several organizations, including Fox and Globo, a large Brazilian conglomerate, and a handful of FM and AM radio stations in South America.

The plane carrying the Chapecoense team departed from Santa Cruz, Bolivia, and crashed before arriving in Medillin on Monday.

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8:40 a.m.

Colombia’s civil aviation agency now says at least six people have survived the plane crash that killed more than 70 people, including many members of a Brazilian soccer team.

The agency statement says at least three Chapecoence players, two plane crew members and one journalist survived Monday’s crash near the city of Medellin.

Reports about the number of survivors have varied overnight because of confusion amid the emergency.

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8:20 a.m.

An injury sidelined Chapecoence soccer player Alejandro Martinuccio. It also likely saved his life.

The Argentine forward wasn’t able to play in the scheduled match in Colombia, so he wasn’t on the team plane that crashed Monday night in Colombia, killing most of those aboard. He told Argentina’s La Red radio that “I was saved because I got injured.”

“I feel profound sadness,” he said. “The only thing I can ask is prayers for the companions who were on the flight.”

The 28-year-old has played for Spain’s Villarreal, Penarol of Uruguay and Brazilian clubs Coritiba, Ponte Preta, Cruzeiro and Fluminense.

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7:45 a.m.

Barcelona and Real Madrid have held a minute of silence before their practice sessions in honor of the victims of the plane crash involving Brazilian club Chapecoense.

Real Madrid also released a statement expressing its “condolences to relatives and friends of the victims” and “wishing an early recovery for the survivors.”

Atletico Madrid used Twitter to send its condolences to the victims’ relatives. One of Chapecoense’s players on the plane was midfielder Cleber Santana, who played for Atletico from 2007-10.

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7:25 a.m.

A spokesman for Brazilian soccer club Chapecoense has confirmed the death of goalkeeper Danilo who had initially been rescued alive from a plane crash in Colombia and was being treated at a hospital.

Team spokesman Andrei Copetti announced the death to The Associated Press. Another goalkeeper was reported to be among several survivors.

Chapecoense was traveling on a chartered flight to play Colombian club Atletico Nacional in the Copa Sudamericana final when the plane crashed near Medellin.

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7:10 a.m.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino says it is a “very, very sad day for football” after a plane carrying members of a Brazilian soccer team crashed in Colombia.

Chapecoense was traveling on a chartered plane to play Colombian club Atletico Nacional in the Copa Sudamericana final. Police in Colombia said there were some survivors among the 81 passengers.

In a statement, Infantino says “we are so sorry to hear about the airplane crash in Colombia, it is shocking and tragic news. At this difficult time our thoughts are with the victims, their families and friends.”

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6:55 a.m.

Bolivian authorities say that the plane carrying a Brazilian first division soccer team that took off from Santa Cruz before crashing in Colombia was owned by a Venezuelan company.

Cesar Torrico, a spokesman for Bolivia’s civil aviation agency, said the aircraft had arrived earlier in the day from the city of Cochabamba and picked up the Brazilian team at Santa Cruz’s Viru Viru airport. Torrico said that the plane underwent an inspection before departing for Colombia and reported no problems.

He said that the LaMia airline hails from the Venezuelan city of Merida but later re-established itself in Santa Cruz. He said the airline had been used in the past to shuttle several Bolivian teams as well as Medellin’s Atletico Nacional for matches around South America.

Brazilian aviation authorities said they had denied LaMia’s request for a charter flight directly from Sao Paulo, saying only a Brazilian or Colombian company was allowed to operate the requested route.

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6:20 a.m.

Brazil’s president says that authorities are mobilizing to help the team and families of victims in the plane crash in Colombia that killed members of a Brazilian first division soccer team.

In a series of tweets Tuesday morning, Michel Temer says officials from the foreign ministry and aviation officials have been called to help.

He said that “the government will do everything possible to alleviate the pain” of family members of the players and journalists who died in the crash.

A chartered aircraft with 81 people on board, including the Chapecoense soccer team which was heading to Colombia for a regional tournament final, crashed on its way to Medellin’s international airport.

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5:30 a.m.

The head of Colombia’s civil aviation agency says that authorities aren’t ruling out the possibility the chartered flight carrying a Brazilian soccer team ran out of fuel before crashing. But for now, the main line of investigation is a possible electrical failure aboard the aircraft.

Alfredo Bocanegra, speaking from the rescue command center, said that communication with Bolivian aviation officials suggested the plane was experiencing electrical problems.

At the same time, investigators will have to evaluate reported testimony from a female flight attendant who said the plane had run out of fuel.

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5:20 a.m.

The Brazilian soccer confederation has released a statement saying it would wait for more information about the plane crash in Colombia before taking any action regarding local competitions in Brazil.

There is one round left in the Brazilian league, which was won by Palmeiras last weekend. The final round will decide which teams will avoid relegation and which teams will secure spots in international competitions next season.

The second leg of the Brazilian Cup final is scheduled be played Wednesday in the southern city of Porto Alegre. Local club Gremio defeated Atletico Mineiro 3-1 in Belo Horizonte.

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4:40 a.m.

A civilian aviation database website says that the British Aerospace 146 plane that crashed on its way to an airport in the Colombian city of Medellin made its first flight on March 1999.

Statistics from planespotters.net show that the regional plane has had several owners since.

From 1999 to 2007, it was owned by Mesaba Aviation in the U.S. before it was transferred. The plane has been in the hands of Bolivian airline LaMia since October 2013.

British Aerospace, which is now known as BAE Systems, says that the first 146 plane took off in 1981 and that just under 400 — including its successor Avro RJ — were built in total in the U.K. through November 2003.

It says around 220 of are still in service in a variety of roles, including aerial firefighting and overnight freight services.

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4:25 a.m.

Colombian police say that five people have survived a plane crash near Medellin’s international airport and the rest of the passengers have been killed.

Gen. Jose Acevedo, head of police in the area surrounding Medellin, provided the information.

A chartered aircraft with 81 people on board, including the Brazilian first division Chapecoense soccer team which was heading to Colombia for a regional tournament final, crashed on its way to Medellin’s international airport.

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3:55 a.m.

The vice president of the Brazilian first division soccer team Chapecoense, whose plane crashed in Colombia, says that the Brazilian city where the team is from is in tears.

Ivan Tozzo said that Chapeco, a city of 200,000 residents in southern Brazil, is already in tears after the crash in Colombia, which occurred before Wednesday’s final of Copa Sudamericana.

Tozzo told cable channel SporTV that “we are very sad, gathered here in the locker room of our stadium. We are still waiting for news. All our board is there, our players. We have nothing concrete on their state.”

He said that “There are a lot of people crying in our city, we could never imagine this. Chapecoense is the biggest reason for joy here. We hope there are many survivors, at least that most of them are OK.”

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2:55 a.m.

Brazilian first division soccer club Chapecoense has issued a brief statement after the plane carrying the team crashed in Colombia.

In a statement on its Facebook page, Chapecoense said “may God accompany our athletes, officials, journalists and other guests traveling with our delegation.”

The team said it would refrain from any further statements until it had fully evaluated the extent of the crash.

A chartered aircraft with 81 people on board, including the Chapecoense team which was heading to Colombia for a regional tournament final, crashed on its way to Medellin’s international airport.

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2:40 a.m.

A local mayor in Colombia says that at least three passengers have been rescued alive from the crash site after a plane carrying a Brazilian soccer team went down near Medellin.

Elkin Ospina, mayor of the La Ceja municipality outside Medellin, told Blu Radio that there may be more survivors but that access to the crash site is complicated.

The chartered aircraft with 81 people on board, including Brazilian first division soccer team Chapecoense which was heading to Colombia for a regional tournament final, crashed on its way to Medellin’s international airport.

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2:30 a.m.

The South American soccer federation has canceled all activities until further notice as a result of Monday’s crash in Colombia of a plane carrying Brazilian first division team Chapecoense.

The CONMEBOL federation said in a statement that its president, Alejandro Dominguez, is on his way to Medellin.

The first of the two-game Copa Sudamericana final was scheduled to be played Wednesday in Medellin between Chapecoense and Atletico Nacional.

The chartered aircraft with 81 people on board, including a Brazilian first division soccer team heading to Colombia for a regional tournament final, crashed on its way to Medellin’s international airport.

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2:10 a.m.

Local media in Colombia are reporting that a male passenger going by the name of Alan has arrived in an ambulance to a hospital near Medellin after the plane crash involving a Brazilian first division soccer team.

Blu Radio said the passenger arrived on a stretcher with an oxygen mask and covered in a blanket. He appeared to be alive.

The chartered plane was carrying 81 people, including the Chapecoense soccer team from southern Brazil. The aircraft had made a stop in Santa Cruz, Bolivia, and was on its way to Medellin’s international airport. The crash site is in a mountainous area outside Medellin.

The team was scheduled to play Wednesday in the first of a two-game Copa Sudamericana final against Atletico Nacional of Medellin.

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12:50 a.m.

Medellin’s mayor says that it is possible there are survivors in the plane crash in Colombia carrying players from a Brazilian soccer team.

Federico Gutierrez told Blu Radio that “it’s a tragedy of huge proportions.” The mayor on his way to the site in a mountainous area outside the city where the chartered aircraft is believed to have crashed shortly before midnight local time.

He said ambulances and rescuers were on their way. It is not clear what caused the crash.

Medellin’s airport confirmed that the aircraft, which departed from Bolivia, was transporting the Chapecoense soccer team from southern Brazil, which was scheduled to play the Copa Sudamericana finals against Atletico Nacional on Wednesday in Medellin.

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12:25 a.m.

Authorities are responding to an emergency after an airplane with 72 people on board has crashed on its way to Medellin’s international airport.

Medellin’s international airport said on its Twitter account that the aircraft had departed from Bolivia.

It’s not clear if there are any survivors. But local media reported that the charter aircraft was carrying members of the soccer team Chapecoense from Brazil, which is scheduled to play Copa Sudamericana finals against Atletico Nacional on Wednesday in Medellin.

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