The Airbus A400M aircraft was undergoing flight trials at San Pablo airport
Emergency services say three people are dead and two unaccounted for
Airport authority said airport has been closed while fire crews attend crash
Prime Minister Mariano Rajor has paid his respects to ‘fellow countrymen’
A military plane has crashed into a field near Seville airport killing up to five people on board.
The Airbus A400M aircraft was undergoing flight trials at San Pablo airport in southern Spain this morning when it crashed, the Spanish defence ministry said.
The emergency services say there were seven people on board – three have been killed, two injured and two are unaccounted for.
Airport authority AENA said that Seville airport has been closed because its fire crews are attending the crash, which happened about a mile outside its perimeter fence.
All flights to Seville are being diverted to Malaga and Jerez airports, the authority said.
It added that an industrial estate near where the Airbus came down in the suburb of Carmona has lost electrical power as a result of the crash.
‘The plane that crashed a mile north of Seville airport in an non-residential area was not a commercial craft,’ said a spokesman for the regional emergency services.
It is unclear whether any other people have been injured in the crash.
Spain’s Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy, said: ‘We express our deepest sympathy. They were fellow countrymen.’
He also cancelled the day’s political meetings on the campaign trail for local elections on May 24.
Photographs published on Spanish newspaper El Pais’ website showed fire services extinguishing the fire at the smoking wreckage in a ploughed field.
Spanish state television TVE broadcast footage shot from a car driving past airport buildings showing a plume of black smoke rising into the sky.
The network said the pilots had communicated with the control tower, saying their plane was in difficulty.
The A400M is a large, propeller-driven transport aircraft that is being assembled in Seville.
Some 194 examples have been ordered by eight countries – including Spain – seeking a replacement to its aging Hercules fleet.