Islamabad: The ambassadors of the Philippines and Norway were among six persons killed today when their helicopter, carrying 11 foreigners, crashed in Pakistan-administered Gilgit-Baltistan region in the north, army said. Leif H Larsen, the Norwegian envoy, and Domingo D Lucenario Jr of the Philippines were killed along with the wives of the Malaysian and Indonesian ambassadors, besides the helicopter's two army pilots.
Six Pakistanis and 11 foreigners were on board the helicopter that crashed on a school building in Naltar valley. “Two pilots and four foreigners, including ambassadors of Philippine, Norway and wives of Malaysian and Indonesian ambassador were killed. Polish and Dutch Ambassadors were injured,” military spokesman Major General Saleem Bajwa said.
Bajwa said that three Mi-17 military helicopters were carrying several diplomats to Gilgit-Baltistan where Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was to address a ceremony. “Two of the helicopters landed safely but the third one crashed and caught fire,” he said.
The nationalities of those killed were not known as yet.
The exact cause of crash was also not immediately known. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was scheduled to visit the region to inaugurate two projects and his plane was already airborne but it was diverted back to Islamabad where it landed safely.