The UN World Food Programme (WFP) said that a child was killed when a WFP-contracted aircraft hit a house while attempting to land during a thunderstorm in Juba on Tuesday.

WFP South Sudan Country Director Adnan Khan said in a statement that four other people -- two boys and two women -- were injured during the incident.

"We regret to report that a five-year-old girl was confirmed dead at Juba Teaching Hospital where she was taken to following the incident yesterday (Tuesday)," said Khan.

The Ilyushin-76 cargo aircraft was contracted by the WFP to airdrop food in South Sudan. It hit a tree and then the metal roof of the single-storey house as it tried to land at Juba airport in heavy rain and low visibility. The aircraft's jet blast damaged a second house as it climbed sharply up.

The aircraft then diverted to Entebbe International Airport in Uganda. During an emergency landing, its main landing gear collapsed as metal roofing sheets were entangled in it.

"The safety and well-being of the people of South Sudan are our top priority. We and the aviation authorities will closely examine what happened so that more innocent lives are not put at risk," Khan said.

The UN agency extended its deepest condolences to the family, pledging to provide all possible support to them in this terrible tragedy.

"An official investigation is underway and the aircraft will be carefully reviewed to discover what caused it to be so low," Khan said.

Source: NAM News Network

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