14:59 GMT +314 December 2019
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    European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker

    EU Commission President Sends Condolences Over Russian Tu-154 Plane Crash

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    Tu-154 Crash in Black Sea (86)
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    EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker expressed condolences to Russia’s President Vladimir Putin following the crash of the Russian Defense Ministry's Tu-154 aircraft into the Black Sea.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Early on Sunday, the Russian Defense Ministry's Tu-154 plane heading from Moscow to Syria with 92 people on board, including the Alexandrov Ensemble members, and nine journalists, disappeared from radar shortly after refueling and take-off from the Russian southern city of Adler, near Sochi. Fragments of the plane were discovered 1.5 kilometers (1 mile) from the sea shore of Sochi at a depth of 50-70 meters (164-184 feet).

    "On this holy day, my thoughts are with the victims, their families and loved ones. In my personal name and in that of the European Commission, I would like to express to you — and through you to the entire nation — my heartfelt condolences," Juncker said in a message to Putin, published on the EU Commission’s website late on Saturday.

    Russia’s Investigative Committee has initiated a criminal case into the catastrophe. A special services source told RIA Novosti that a terrorist attack is not being considered as the main reason behind the aircraft crash.

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    Tu-154 Crash in Black Sea (86)

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    condolences, Tu-154, Russian Defense Ministry, Jean-Claude Juncker, Russia
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