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    Russian S7 Airliner Co-Owner Among Killed in Germany Plane Crash

    © RIA Novosti . Dmitry Aleshkovskiy
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    Meanwhile, Russian media said among those killed by the crash was the co-owner of the country's S7 air carrier. The German Bild newspaper reports that two of the three killed were Russians.

    The plane that crashed in Germany belonged to the Globus air company, which is a part of S7 Airliner, a source in the Russian Federal Air Transport Agency (Rosaviatsia) told Sputnik. A source close to Vladislav Filev, the head of S7 Airlines claimed to be killed in the crash by Russian media refuted the reports about his death.

    According to the German newspaper Bild, a light six-seat plane crashed in a field and burst into flames near Egelsbach, a town in the state of Hesse. 

    S7 Airlines confirmed that the company's co-owner Natalia Fileva died as a result of the crash. Earlier, a source told Sputnik that the incident claimed the lives of Natalia Fileva and her father. Natalia Fileva, the wife of S7 CEO Vladislav Filev, was flying to Germany for medical treatment, the source specified.

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    "On March 31, 2019, during the landing of a private Epic-LT plane at Egelsbach Airport (Frankfurt am Main), at the age of 55, S7 Airlines shareholder Natalia Fileva was killed. The circumstances of the tragedy are not yet known," the S7 press service said.

    At the same time, the airliner announced that the international commission will investigate the crash with the participation of the Russian aviation authorities.

    Previously the German police reported that a plane crashed in Germany, killing at least three people, two of whom are Russians. However, a source told Sputnik that all those people, who died in the incident, including a pilot, were Russian nationals. 

    A representative of the German Federal Bureau of Aircraft Accident Investigation (BFU) told Sputnik that the agency had launched a probe into the accident. Germany's air traffic control agency DFS told Sputnik said the pilot did not report having problems before the plane vanished from radar.

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    "We can only speculate. The pilot might have lost control of the aircraft or experienced a technical fault. There is no certainty at the moment", a DFS spokesperson said.

    A source in the Russian space industry said S7 was working on a strategy for commercial space launches at Natalia Fileva's request. It was to be laid out at the upcoming meeting of Russia's state security council.

    "The S7 Board of Directors was expected to discuss and approve a new strategy for S7 Space […] This issue will be postponed due to Natalia Fileva's death", the source said.

    Fileva told Sputnik earlier that the company was going to cancel a contract with a Ukrainian rocket maker on the production of Zenit launch vehicles and use the soon-to-be-built Soyuz-5 rockets for launches from its recently purchased Sea Launch floating platform off Long Beach, California.

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    Russia's Roscosmos chief Dmitry Rogozin expressed Sunday his condolences to the family and relatives of Natalia Fileva, the co-owner of Russia's S7 Airlines and said that the accident was his "personal tragedy", according to the Roscosmos press-service.

    "I want to express sincere condolences to the husband and family of Natasha Fileva on behalf of my colleagues at Roscosmos. She was a great aviation and space enthusiast, and her death is a personal tragedy for all of us," he tweeted.    

    ​In a statement on Roscosmos' website, Rogozin said the agency planned to build a customized version of the future Soyuz-5 rocket to be used at Sea Launch. He said they had been in constant contact on S7 Space, which is Russia's first commercial space firm.

    Tags:
    Plane crash, S7, Germany, Frankfurt
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