Four bodies recovered from crashed Indonesia cargo plane

TIMIKA, Indonesia (AFP) – The bodies of four passengers on an Indonesian cargo plane that went missing in the jungles of Papua a week ago have been recovered, the search and rescue agency said yesterday.

The DHC-6 Twin Otter took off from the city of Timika for a short flight to Ilaga, a mountainous region in the remote eastern province of Papua.

Local authorities declared the plane – carrying three crew, a police officer and 1.7 tonnes of rice – missing after it failed to land hours after taking off.

Yesterday, the search and rescue agency said four bodies were discovered near the wreckage of the small plane.

“The location was difficult to reach because of the dangerous terrain, but thankfully we managed to recover the victims’ bodies,” Budi Purnomo of the national search and rescue agency told reporters.

Indonesia relies heavily on air transport to connect its thousands of islands but mountainous Papua is a particularly difficult area to reach.

Rescue personnel carry a body, retrieved near the crash site of an aircraft en route to Ilaga, following their arrival at the Mozes Kilangin airport in Timika, Papua province. PHOTO: AFP