Trump, Ethiopian PM exchange condolences after plane crash

Saturday March 16 2019

Ethiopia crash families

Distraught relatives at the Ethiopian Airlines crash site at Hama Quntushele village in Oromia region, four days after a Boeing 737 MAX aircraft accident claimed 157 lives, March 14, 2019. PHOTO | TONY KARUMBA | AFP 

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US President Donald Trump and Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed exchanged condolences on Friday after 157 people were killed in the crash of an Ethiopian Airlines jet, the prime minister said.

"Abiy Ahmed & [Trump] in a phone call today shared their condolences to the people of both countries for the loss of lives in the fatal Flight 302," which crashed on Sunday minutes into its flight to Nairobi, Mr Ahmed said on Twitter.

"President Trump hailed @flyethiopian as a strong institution & affirmed provision of technical support where needed," he said, referring to the national flag carrier.

Ethiopia, stunned by the loss, declared a day of mourning after the crash and called on help from abroad in its investigation of it.

The two flight recorders aboard the aircraft are being analysed in France.

The doomed plane, a Boeing 737 MAX, was just four months old. The model has been grounded worldwide since the disaster.