The United States of America (USA) has extended its condolences to the Philippines after a C-130 military plane with 96 people on board crashed in Sulu on Sunday.
“On behalf of the United States, I offer our deep condolences to the people of the Philippines regarding the tragic plane crash in which several dozen service members were killed,” US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said in a statement.
“Our thoughts are with those who were injured and the families of those who were lost,” he added.
Sullivan also offered support to the Philippines in its disaster response effort.
“We stand shoulder to shoulder with our Philippine allies at this difficult time and are ready to provide all appropriate support to the Philippines’ response effort,” he said.
A Philippine Air Force C-130 plane, with tail number 5125, crashed around 11:30 a.m. on Sunday.
Initial investigation showed that the plane took off from Lumbia Airport in Cagayan de Oro City and was about to land in Jolo port in Sulu when it crashed. The plane was said to have missed the runway while trying to land.
As of Monday, the number of military personnel who died from the fiery crash climbed to 47, while 49 were injured.
Of those injured, 32 were evacuated to Zamboanga City while 18 are being treated at Kuta Heneral Teodulfo Bautista Station Hospital and 11th Infantry Division Hospital.
Three civilians on the ground were also killed and four others were hurt.
The military said all passengers, pilots, and crew were already retrieved.
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenza has ordered a full investigation into the incident.