Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc offered condolences to relatives of the officers and soldiers involved in two separate accidents of a fighter jet and a rescue aircraft.
One pilot was found dead, another was rescued and nine crewmembers are still missing.
The body of pilot Senior Lieutenant Colonel Trần Quang Khải was found at about 6pm Friday by a local fisherman, Đặng Văn Kính, near Hòn Mắt, an islet 40 nautical miles off the coast of central Nghệ An Province.
At 5am the next morning, the provincial coastguard brought the body ashore, where more than 150 naval officers and hundreds of people, including Khải’s family members and friends, had gathered.
His formal funeral will take place later at the Funeral House of the 4th Military Zone in Nghệ An.
Khải was one of two pilots onboard the Russian-made Su30 MK2 fighter jet that disappeared from radar on June 14 during a training session in the area of Hòn Mắt Island. The other pilot, Major Nguyễn Hữu Cường, was rescued by local fishermen at 5am on June 15.
While searching for the jet, a CASA212 rescue aircraft with nine crewmembers aboard also lost contact at 12:30pm on June 16. Debris from the aircraft has been discovered to the southwest of Bạch Long Vỹ Island near the delimitation line on the Tonkin Gulf.
In his latest official order, the Prime Minister urged the deployment of all forces - including the Air Defence-Air Force Service, Navy, coast guards, border guards and Fisheries Resources Surveillance - to search for the missing people and aircraft.
Authorities of the coastal provinces from Quảng Ninh to Hà Tĩnh are working with the national committee on search and rescue operations, and also calling for fishermen’s participation in the search.
He also asked for drastic efforts to be taken by the Ministry of National Defence, the Ministry of Transport and the Ministry of Information and Communications to find the missing people soon. — VNS