Tourist helicopter crashes into Russian lake

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A tourist helicopter with 16 people on board has crashed into a lake in Russia’s far east, officials say.

There were nine known survivors, Russian media quoted local health authorities as saying.

Thirteen tourists and three crew were on board when it crashed into the Kuril Lake on the Kamchatka Peninsula, the local government said in a statement.

Emergency services and divers have been sent to the area to search for those still unaccounted for.

The Mi-8 helicopter was carrying tourists from Moscow and St Petersburg, state news agency RIA reported.

The helicopter is reportedly lying at a depth of 100 metres (330 feet) in the lake.

The Kamchatka peninsula – more than 6,000 km (3,730 miles) east of Moscow – is popular among tourists.

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