Islamabad A passenger plane slammed into a wheat field and burst into flames minutes after takeoff Monday in eastern Pakistan. All 45 people on board were killed, officials said.
The Fokker F-27 twin-engine aircraft went down on the outskirts of the city of Multan minutes after taking off for Lahore, spiraling in the air before it hit the ground and bursting into flames, witnesses said.
"All 41 passengers and four crew members on board the plane have died," said Iftikhar Babar, the district coordination officer for Multan, which lies about 400 miles southwest of the capital, Islamabad.
Malik Bashir, Pakistan International Airlines' station manager at Multan airport, said the cause of the crash was not yet known, but ruled out the possibility of a terrorist attack on the state carrier's plane.