Helene and Francoise Detable Among 7 French Nationals Killed in Lao Airlines Plane Crash

October 16, 2013 Updated: July 18, 2015

Seven French nationals–Patricia Debord and Bruno Debord, Helene Andrew Detable and Francoise Detable, Guy Henri Vimont, Jean Luc Salelles, and Dominique Vimont–were among the 49 people killed in a plane crash in Laos.

The plane was preparing to land at the Pakse Airport but ran into “extreme bad weather conditions” and crashed into the Mekong River, according to the the Lao Ministry of Public Works and Transport.

The plane left Wattay airport at 2:45 p.m. on Wednesday and crashed at 4 p.m.

All 44 passengers and give crew members died.

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius confirmed the deaths of seven French nationals. 

“I have just learned with deep shock and great sadness of the air disaster that took place in southern Laos, in which at least seven of our compatriots were killed,” Fabius said in a statement, reported France24. “My first thoughts are with the families and friends of the victims.”

Embassy officials were traveling to the site of the crash.

Also, French officials were working on supporting the families of the victims. 

Laos, landlocked between the Burma, China, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Thailand, has relatively poorly developed infrastructure and is known as being insular as a communist country. Few details about the crash have been released, although officials were planning on holding a news conference on Thursday. 

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