10:07 GMT +322 October 2019
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    French President Francois Hollande (R), Spain's King Felipe VI and his wife Queen Letizia deliver a speech at the Elysee palace in Paris, March 24, 2015.

    European Leaders Express Condolences to Families of Airbus A320 Passengers

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    Germanwings Airbus A320 Crash in Southern France (72)
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    European leaders and high-ranking officials expressed their condolences to the families of the passengers of the Airbus A320 plane that had crashed in southern France Tuesday.

    There were around 150 people on board the flight 4U9525 from Barcelona to Dusseldorf.

    French President Francois Hollande said that the conditions of the accident suggested that there were no survivors adding that there had likely been many German nationals aboard the plane.

    The French president spoke to the German chancellor and the Spanish prime minister by telephone.

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she was "shocked" over the Germanwings plane crash with about 150 people aboard believed to be dead, the German leader's spokesman said. Merkel "cancelled her appointments to follow developments", spokesman Steffen Seibert said in a statement.

    Angela Merkel said Germany, France and Spain had agreed to jointly investigate the Airbus A320 crash. Fifteen German teenagers were among the 150 passengers iof the Airbus that crashed in the Alps, the Local Spain reported Tuesday.

    German Foreign Minister Steinmeier expressed his condolences to the families of the victims of the plane crash. German ambassador to France is heading to the crash site.

    Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy confirmed during a Tuesday press conference the creation of a crisis cabinet after a Germanwings passenger jet crashed in France.

    The prime minister said he was cutting short his trip to Vitoria, the capital city of Spain's Basque Autonomous Community, and was returning to Madrid to take charge of the crisis cabinet.

    "Shocked by the air accident in the Alps. A tragedy. We are cooperating with the French and German authorities in the investigation," Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said in a Twitter message after French officials said nobody survived in the accident.

    Spanish King Felipe VI has reportedly cut short his state visit to France following the Airbus 320 plane crash.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin offered his condolences to the Spanish king and the German chancellor over the plane crash, a statement by the Kremlin press service read.

    "Putin stressed that Russia shares the grief of those who lost their relatives and friends in this tragedy," the statement said.

    Spanish Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria told Reuters that 45 passengers of the Airbus A320 are believed to be Spanish nationals. He offered his condolences to the families of the passengers of the flight 4U9525.

    However, the Spanish prime minister and Catalonian President Artur Mas could not confirm the information about the possibility of over 40 Spanish nationals aboard the Airbus A320.

    "No, I cannot confirm [they are Spanish nationals]. Bearing a Spanish surname does not necessarily mean that they are Spanish. The information will appear soon," Mas told journalists. The Catalonian president added that local authorities were setting up a team of psychologists and medics to help the families of the victims.

    Mas also said that authorities in Catalonia's capital of Barcelona were cooperating with authorities in Madrid and Paris, as they sought to organize transportation to the crash site.

    European Commissioner for Transport said via Twitter that EU services assisted in the investigation of the plane crash.

    British Prime Minister David Cameron said the UK would do everything to assist the French emergency services.

    Finnish Prime Minister Alexander Stubb and Swedish Minister of Foreign Affairs Margot Wallström offered their condolences to the families and friends of the Airbus passengers as well.

    Prime Minister of Belgium Charles Michel said his country was ready to provide any assistance to France over the Airbus crash.

    Germanwings is a low-cost affiliate of German airline Lufthansa, which was created in 1997. In the wake of the tragedy, Lufthansa has changed the colors of its logo.

    As officials are under way to the crash site, photos of the recovery operation in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, southern France, have been released.

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    Germanwings Airbus A320 Crash in Southern France (72)

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    Germanwings A320 Passenger Jet With 150 Aboard Crashes in Southern France
    Tags:
    Plane crash, France, condolences, Airbus A320 crash, Germanwings, King Felipe VI, Angela Merkel, Francois Hollande, Mariano Rajoy, Germany, Spain, Europe
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