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29 killed in Philippine military plane crash

A military plane has crashed in the southern Philippines killing at least 29 people, with dozens more pulled alive from the burning wreckage.

The transporter was carrying more than 90 people, mostly troops, when it overshot the runway on Jolo island.

Fifty people were injured and 17 are missing, the military said. A nearby military hospital treated survivors.

A large ball of black smoke was seen above the wreckage of the plane, a Lockheed C130 Hercules.

Pictures of the site published by local media show burning debris in a wooded area close to a number of buildings.

The plane, which came down at 11:30 local time (03:30 GMT) a few kilometres from the town of Jolo, was carrying troops from Cagayan de Oro, on the southern island of Mindanao.

“It missed the runway, trying to regain power but it didn’t make it,” armed forces chief Gen Sobejana told reporters.

Two of those killed and four of the injured were civilians on the ground, the defence ministry said.

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The soldiers were among reinforcements sent to the southern Philippines to combat Islamist militants such as the Abu Sayyaf group.

Officials said there was no sign that the aircraft had been attacked, and an investigation would start once the rescue operation was complete.

Many of those on board had only recently completed basic military training, AFP reports.

The plane, previously in service with the US Air Force, was handed to the Philippines in January.

It was the first of two used Hercules to be delivered by the US under a defence co-operation scheme.

The aircraft first flew in 1988, according to Aviation Safety Network.

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