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Pope asks for prayers for Colombia crash victims

Pope asks for prayers for Colombia crash victims

Colombian aviation authority head Alfredo Bocanegra said initial reports suggested the aircraft was suffering electrical problems, although investigators were also looking into an account from one of the survivors that the plane had run out of fuel about five minutes from its expected landing at Jose Maria Cordova airport outside Medellin.

Brazil have ordered three days of national mourning for the team.

Three of the six survivors are footballers: defender Alan Ruschel, reserve goalkeeper Jakson Follman and defender Helio Zemper. It advanced to the Copa Sudamericana finals after defeating some of the region's top teams, including Argentina's San Lorenzo and Independiente.

The tragedy stunned the southern city of Chapeco and its 200,000 residents, and thousands of fans gathered Tuesday to mourn at the local cathedral and outside the team's small green-and-white concrete stadium.

"It's a team that people loved, a team that we started to build a long time ago". Businesses and schools were closed while a monument honoring the first city settlers was wrapped in a black cloth.

On social media, haunting last photos showed the smiling players boarding the flight to Colombia for the first of two matches against Atletico Nacional.

The chartered British Aerospace 146 aircraft crashed in the remote mountains of Colombia en route to a major cup final, killing 71 out of 77 people on board.

Twenty-one Brazilian journalists were traveling with the team.

On Sunday, Chapecoense almost defeated famed Sao Paulo club Palmeiras, which won 1-0 to claim its first Brazilian league title in decades. Paulo Follmann said he has not spoke to his son and does not know how serious his condition is. The second match was to be a week later in Brazil.

Twenty Brazilian journalists, ranging from veteran commentators to young local reporters, were among the dead.

President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev offered condolences to the President of Brazil Michel Temer over the deadly plane crash, the press service of Akorda said. They also called for Chapecoense to be exempt from relegation to Serie B for the next three seasons.

Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane and Brazil coach Tite sent their condolences to those affected by the Chapecoense plane crash.