Beijing and Addis Ababa ground Boeing 737s after Ethiopia plane crash

The plane crashed yesterday a few minutes after take-off, killing 157 people. In October, an aircraft of the same model crashed into the sea in Indonesia, also after take-off. The accidents are very similar. Among the victims there are United Nations personalities, entrepreneurs, NGO members on the way to Nairobi for a UN conference on the environment.

Beijing (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The Chinese air authorities have decided to stop all Boeing 737 Max 8, after a similar model of Ethiopian Airlines crashed yesterday. The airlines must ground all Boeing by 8am today.

The Ethiopian Airlines flight had departed from the capital Addis Ababa for Nairobi, but a few minutes after take-off, it crashed to earth killing all 157 people on board, including personnel.

There are 8 Chinese nationals among the dead, including one from Hong Kong, 32 Kenyans, 18 Canadians, 8 Italians, and many others. The victims include officials from the UN, the World Food Program, FAO, the Agency for Refugees, members of NGOs. They were going to Nairobi to attend a UN Environment Conference, which begins today, which brings together more than 4700 heads of state, ministers, entrepreneurs.

This is the second accident in five months, involving a Boeing 737 Max 8. Last October 29, a Boeing of Lion Air (Indonesia), crashed into the sea immediately after take-off, with 189 victims.

The Chinese authorities issued a statement that due to the "similarity" between the two incidents, they decided to ground Boeing flights. China uses at least 90 of these aircraft, a model that was put on the market in 2017.

Ethiopian Airlines, together with Cayman Airlines, have also decided to stop all model 737 Max 8 planes on the ground.

Boeing said it was "deeply saddened" by the disaster and sent a group to offer technical assistance in the investigation. This is in the hands of the Ethiopian authorities, together with the Boeing team and the US authorities for transport safety.