KARACHI: A Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) plane carrying an estimated 99 people crashed in Karachi’s Model Colony near Jinnah International Airport on Friday.
So far, 66 people have been confirmed dead, while two passengers have survived, according to Sindh health department officials.
Meanwhile as reports of the crash spread, local politicians and world leaders reacted to the news with extreme sadness.
Expressing his condolences over the tragic incident, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took to the Twitter wrote, “The news from Pakistan this morning is devastating,” adding that Canadians were keeping Pakistanis in their thoughts.
The news from Pakistan this morning is devastating. To the families and friends of those who lost their lives in the crash of PK 8303, and to everyone affected by this terrible tragedy, our hearts go out to you. Canadians are keeping you in our thoughts today.
— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) May 22, 2020
A similar message of solidarity was tweeted by the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan, which said that it stood with the country in its time of sadness.
We learned with heavy heart the PIA plane crash close to Karachi Airport. Our hearts go out to all families who lost their loved ones today. We stand with Pakistan in the time of sadness!
— Chinese Emb Pakistan (@CathayPak) May 22, 2020
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a Twitter message that he was “deeply saddened” by the loss of lives in the crash. The premier offered condolences to the families of those who died and wished the injured a speedy recovery.
Deeply saddened by the loss of life due to a plane crash in Pakistan. Our condolences to the families of the deceased, and wishing speedy recovery to those injured.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) May 22, 2020
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said that his “heart went out” to the families of those who died in the crash. He added that Afghans would stand by Pakistanis in their time of sadness.
My heart goes out to the families of victims who lost their lives in the PIA plane crash in Karachi. I offer my sincere commiserations to the people and the government of Pakistan. Afghans stand with you in this moment of grief.
— Ashraf Ghani (@ashrafghani) May 22, 2020
Russian President Vladimir Putin also offered condolences over the crash.
Condolences to the President and the Prime Minister of Pakistan over a plane crash in Karachi https://t.co/yhmPqZcRtM
— President of Russia (@KremlinRussia_E) May 22, 2020
Australia’s High Commissioner to Pakistan Dr Geoffrey Shaw tweeted that his “thoughts and prayers” were with the families of those who were on the plane. He added that the Commission was trying to determine whether any Australians were also among the passengers.
Sad to hear about the tragic @Official_PIA #planecrash in Karachi today. My thoughts and prayers are with the friends and families of those affected. My team is making urgent inquiries of local authorities to determine whether any Australians were affected.
— Dr Geoffrey Shaw (@AusHCPak) May 22, 2020
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran Khan thanked world leaders for their condolences, saying that the people of the country valued the “support and solidarity” in their hour of grief.
I thank world leaders for reaching out to condole over the tragic air crash and loss of precious lives. The people of Pakistan value this support and solidarity in our hour of grief.
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) May 22, 2020