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Russian govt. to consider Siberia air crash compensation soon

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Russia's transportation minister said Monday the government would consider at its next meeting paying 100,000 rubles ($3,700) from the federal budget to the relatives of victims in an air crash in Siberia Sunday.
IRKUTSK, July 10 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's transportation minister said Monday the government would consider at its next meeting paying 100,000 rubles ($3,700) from the federal budget to the relatives of victims in an air crash in Siberia Sunday.

The A-310-300, owned by the Novosibirsk-based S7, formerly Sibir, crashed on landing at the airport in Irkutsk, about 3,000 miles east of Moscow, killing at least 124 and injuring 70 out of 203 people on board.

Igor Levitin, who is also head of the commission investigating the accident, said S7 and insurance companies had pledged to pay 50,000 rubles ($1,860) and 12,000 rubles ($450) respectively to the passengers' relatives.

The minister also said regional authorities would be in charge of funerals and the delivery of bodies for burial.

The liner was making a routine flight from Moscow to Irkutsk, the home airport for popular tourist destination Lake Baikal.

The cause of the tragedy has not been identified so far. Preliminary reports suggest a fault with the brake hydraulic system might have caused the airliner to veer off the runway upon landing and burst into flames after hitting a concrete wall and plowing into private garages.

President Vladimir Putin declared July 10 a day of mourning for the A-310 victims.

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