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Russia: Search Continues For Crash Victims In Black Sea

Moscow, 6 October 2001 (RFE/RL) -- A fleet of Russian ships is continuing to search the Black Sea for bodies and wreckage from the unexplained crash on 4 October of a Russian airliner. At least 78 people -- mostly Israelis -- died in the crash. One of the search ships is using an unmanned diving capsule in an attempt to locate the plane's flight data and cockpit voice recorders, believed to be more than 1,000 meters below the surface.

Ukrainian Prime Minister Anatoliy Kinakh says the possibility that a Ukrainian missile accidentally shot down the plane cannot be dismissed. Russia opened a criminal investigation on suspicion the crash may have been the work of terrorists.

Relatives of the victims are arriving in the Black Sea resort of Sochi as efforts continue to locate bodies. At least 14 bodies have been recovered so far. The aircraft belonged to Sibir Airlines and was on a flight from Tel Aviv to Novosibirsk.