Four Finns among five dead in hunting tour air crash in Zimbabwe

Source: Xinhua| 2018-11-25 00:23:41|Editor: yan
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HELSINKI, Nov. 24 (Xinhua) -- Zimbabwean police confirmed to Finnish media on Saturday afternoon that five people including four Finnish nationals were killed in Friday's aircrash in Chamanjenjere Hills, Zimbabwe.

Initial international media reports from Zimbabwe had been conflicting about the number and the nationalities of the victims.

Paul Nyathi, spokesman for the Zimbabwean police, told Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat the nationalities were confirmed on the basis of passports found on the site.

Finnish media reported that the Finns were on a tourist hunting tour to East Africa. In addition to the four Finnish passengers, one local pilot was also killed.

Travel industry sources told Helsingin Sanomat that some dozens of Finns purchase African hunting excursions annually. The price ranges from a few thousands euros to tens of thousands. Finns usually obtain licences to hunt elephants and buffalos.

It is common that privately owned aircraft or helicopters are chartered. Zimbabwean police told Finland's national broadcaster Yle that the aircraft had taken off at the Buffalo Range airfield near Chiredz and was to fly to Victoria Falls.

Finland has no actual diplomatic representation in Zimbabwe except an honorary consul, and Finnish embassy in Lusaka, Zambia has been in contact with Zimbabwe.

Media reports gave the age of the victims as above 50. In Helsinki, Foreign Ministry spokesman Harri Kilpi said Finnish authorities would not comment on the nature of the travel, nor the age of the victims.