Plane with 22 people on board missing in Nepal’s mountains

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KATHMANDU, Nepal — A small airplane with 22 people on board flying on a popular tourist route was missing in Nepal’s mountains on Sunday, an official said.

The Tara Airlines plane, which was on a 15-minute scheduled flight to the mountain town of Jomsom, took off from the resort town of Pokhara, 200 kilometers (125 miles) east of Kathmandu. Shortly after taking off, it lost contact with its airport tower.

Police official Ramesh Thapa said there was no information on the Twin Otter aircraft and a search was underway.

There were six foreigners on board the plane, including four Indians and two Germans, a police official not authorized to speak to the media said.

It has been raining in the area for the past few days but flights have been operating normally. This route allows planes to fly over mountains and then land in valleys.

It is a popular route with foreign hikers who trek on the mountain trails and also with Indian and Nepalese pilgrims who visit the revered Muktinath temple.

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