MP loses wife and two children in Ethiopian Airlines crash that killed 157 – News Live
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MP loses wife and two children in Ethiopian Airlines crash that killed 157 – News Live

February 21, 2020

 A Slovakian MP has confirmed “with deep sadness” that his wife and two children were killed in the Ethiopian Airlines crash this morning   All 157 people on board Flight ET302 were killed as the aeroplane came down six minutes after taking off from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital   According to reports, seven of the passengers were British nationals, although this is yet to be confirmed by the Foreign Office   Anton Hrnko, the deputy leader of the Slovak National Party, announced via Facebook today that his wife and children had died in the tragedy  He wrote in Slovak: “With deep sadness I announce that my dear wife Blanka, son Martin and daughter Michal died during the air disaster in Addis Ababa today in the morning hours  “Those who knew them, give them a quiet memory.”     Besides serving as a senior official within the Slovak National Party, Mr Hrnko is also a member of the National Council, the country’s 150-member parliament  He has also held roles in the Slovakian ministry of defence and the parliament’s foreign committee  According to Slovakian media reports, his son, Martin Hrnko, worked as a travel agent  Within an hour of Mr Hrnko’s announcement, almost 3,000 Facebook users had posted comments expressing their sympathies, with thousands writing “Úprimnú sústrasť”, meaning “My condolences”   There were reportedly 35 nationalities on board the doomed flight today, with Chinese state media saying eight were Chinese nationals  Among the passengers on the Nairobi-bound flight were 32 Kenyans, 18 Canadians, nine Ethiopians, eight Americans and eight Italians    The remaining victims were reportedly from Britain, France, Egypt, the Netherlands, India, Russia, Morocco, Belgium, Indonesia, Somalia, Norway, Serbia, Togo, Mozambique, Rwanda, Sudan, Uganda, Yemen, Spain and Israel  Four of those onboard were listed as using United Nations passports and their nationalities were not immediately clear  The flight lost contact six minutes after it set off at 8.38am local time. It had been expected to arrive in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, less than two hours afterward but instead it has ended in disaster     The plane was a Boeing 737 800 Max – the same model as the Lion Air plane crash tragedy in Indonesia which killed 189 people in October last year  Ethiopian Airlines CEO Tewolde Gebremariam said the captain of the crashed plane told controllers at Bole airport he was having difficulty and wanted to return, and that he had been given clearance  He said smoke was still emanating from the site of the crash when he visited it this morning  The flight “had unstable vertical speed” shortly after take off, Swedish flight-tracking website flightradar24 said  Max Kingsley-Jones, group editor of online news site Flight Global, said Ethiopian Airlines has a “great reputation” in the aviation world     Speaking to th BBC , he said: “Ethiopian [Airlines] is really the jewel in the crown for Africa’s airlines In fact, international airlines across the world look up to Ethiopian.  “It’s got a fantastic network, it’s got a great reputation and it has a fleet to go with that operation  “It operates long-haul aircraft, all the latest technology. and then on short-haul it’s got [Boeing] 737s ”    State-owned Ethiopian Airlines is one of the biggest carriers on the continent by fleet size with roughly 100 planes   The Ethiopian Prime Minister’s office wrote on Twitter : “The office of the PM, on behalf of government and people of Ethiopia, would like to express it’s deepest condolences to the families that have lost their loved ones on Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 on regular scheduled flight to Nairobi, Kenya this morning ”

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