Iranian fighter jet crashes, 3 killed

An Iranian fighter jet crashed Monday in a residential area in the city of Tabriz killing three people, including two of its crew, Iran’s state television said.

The head of the local Red Crescent organization said the plane hit a school and that one of the dead was a local resident.

The city official in Iran’s northwestern region, Mohammad-Bagher Honarvar, told state television that the school was being closed at the time of the crash due to the coronavirus pandemic.

He identified the plane as an F-5 fighter and said it crashed at around 9:00 am local time in the Monajem area of ​​Tabriz. An investigation is currently underway, state television said.

Official news agency IRNA posted on its website video footage showing firefighters trying to extinguish the fire at the crash site.

Iran’s Air Force is made up mostly of Russian-made fighter jets from the Soviet era — MiG and Sukhoi — and China. Several American F-4 and F-5 fighter jets dating from before the 1979 Islamic revolution are also part of its air fleet. [ab/uh]