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70 Chinese students, teachers on crashed plane

Updated: 2013-07-08 07:38
( Xinhua)

SHANGHAI - A preliminary report said two students from East China's Zhejiang province died in a plane crash in San Francisco on Saturday local time.

Based on information obtained from their boarding passes, two female middle school students from Jiangshan city, Zhejiang province, died in the accident, a reply from Asiana Airlines' head office in China to the Jiangshan municipal government said.

But the identities of the dead have not been confirmed by DNA tests yet, according to the reply.

The Ministry of Education confirmed in a statement that 70 Chinese students and teachers were on the plane.

Among them, four teachers and 30 students were from Zhejiang and six teachers and 30 students were from North China's Shanxi province.

The ministry has contacted officials in charge of education affairs with the Chinese Consulate General in San Francisco and asked them to offer all possible help to the students and teachers, the statement said.

It also instructed education departments of Zhejiang and Shanxi as well as schools involved to do their best to help, the statement said.

The municipal government of Jiangshan said the two students were believed to be travelling with a group of middle school students and teachers from Jiangshan on Asiana Airlines Flight 214 to take part in a summer camp in the United States.

Some 30 students and five teachers had planned to travel with the group, but one teacher missed the flight to Seoul and later, the flight from Seoul to San Francisco, according to the municipal government.

The students and teachers from Taiyuan No 5 Middle School and Taiyuan No 1 Foreign Language School were also going to the United States to take part in a summer camp. It has been confirmed that none of the students were injured, and they have all gotten in touch with their parents.

"My son called me at 3 am this morning, saying that the plane he took crashed, but he is safe. And he comforted me, saying don't worry about him. He then sent a short message at 6 am to let me know he is safe," said a father of a student surnamed Zhang.

Only one teacher from Shanxi suffered minor injuries, the department said.

The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) said Sunday that Chinese airlines will make all efforts to assist Chinese passengers in the wake of Saturday's Asiana Airlines crash.

Li Jiaxiang, CAAC head, said the San Francisco offices of Air China and China Eastern Airlines will offer assistance to Chinese passengers and their family members.

CAAC also expressed condolences and showed great concern for the victims and those injured in the crash.

Asiana Airlines Flight 214 from Seoul crashed while landing at San Francisco International Airport on Saturday.

A total of 141 Chinese citizens were among the 291 passengers aboard the flight.

Two passengers were confirmed dead and 182 others were injured, including 49 in critical conditions thus far, according to Asiana Airlines' official account on Sina Weibo, China's most popular Twitter-like microblogging website.

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