Helicopter carrying Nepal's tourism minister crashes
A helicopter carrying Nepal's tourism minister has crashed in Nepal's hilly east, officials said Wednesday, with no word yet on the fate of those aboard.
The minister, Rabindra Adhikari, was travelling with five other passengers from the eastern district of Taplejung to Terathum when the Air Dynasty chopper went down.
"A helicopter carrying Nepal's tourism minister has crashed, but we do not have any more information right now," Home Secretary Prem Kumar Rai told reporters.
It is just the latest aviation accident to plague Nepal, an impoverished Himalayan nation with a poor air safety record.
Nepal has some of the world's most remote and tricky runways, flanked by snow-capped peaks with approaches that pose a challenge for even accomplished pilots.
In April last year, a Malaysian jet with 139 people on board aborted its takeoff and skidded off a runway.
A month earlier a US-Bangla Airways plane crashed near an airport, killing 51 people.
Nepal-based airlines are banned from flying in European Union airspace.
Its poor air safety record is largely blamed on inadequate maintenance and sub-standard management.