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Plane crashes on takeoff from Havana airport (VIDEOS-PHOTOS)

There were reportedly 104 passengers plus crew aboard the plane

A Cubana de Aviacion Boeing 737-200 with 104 people on board crashed Friday on takeoff from Havana’s Jose Marti International Airport, according to Cuba’s state-run television.

The flight was headed to the eastern Cuban city of Holguin, and casualties have been reported, an airport source told CNN.

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The plane went down at 12:08 p.m. in the Santiago de las Vegas neighborhood near the airport, according to Cuba’s state-run newspaper Granma. The report included a photo from an airport terminal of a large plume of black smoke rising in the distance.

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The aircraft for Flight DMJ 0972 had been rented by the airline, according to Granma.

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Holguin is more 700 kilometers (about 500) miles east of the Cuban capital. Cuban state media originally reported that the flight was bound for Guyana.

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A large fireball followed by a towering plume of smoke was visible near the airport on the outskirts of Havana, according to witnesses.

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Cubana de Aviacion -Cuba’s national carrier- has had to ground some of its aging fleet because of safety issues, though the cause of Friday’s crash is unknown.

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Source: CNN