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Libyan Newswire

All flights to Bentiu in South Sudan grounded following helicopter crash

28 Aug 2014

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Dust rises as a helicopter takes off. UN Photo/Tim McKulka

The UN Mission in South Sudan and the UN humanitarian service (UNHAS) have grounded all flights to the town of Bentiu, in Unity State of South Sudan.

This follows the crash of a helicopter on Tuesday in which three Russian crew members died.

The UN humanitarian Coordinator and the deputy head of UNMISS, Toby Lanzer says the Mission is treating the crash as a hostile act.

“Helicopters fly, they don’t fall out of the sky. We now have the black box, we now have the voice recorder, we now have the control panel, the investigation started yesterday, analyses are taking place, things are moving very quickly and I am not in a position to say with any certainty or clarity anything more than that.” (24″)

Mr. Lanzer also said that UNMISS is working very hard to prevent a famine in South Sudan.

The country, which became independent in 2011, has been mired in conflict between government forces and troops supporting the former Vice-President.

Jocelyn Sambira, United Nations.

Duration:  1’03″