More than 100 people dead following plane crash in Cuba

The plane crashed into a farm field near Havana shortly after take-off

More than 100 people dead following plane crash in Cuba

Rescuers work at the site where an airplane of Cuban airline

More than 100 people have died after a plane crashed into a field shortly after take-off in Havana, Cuban state television has confirmed.

According to reports, three female survivors have been rushed to hospital and are in a critical condition after emergency services freed them from the wreckage.

Authorities in Cuba have declared two days of national mourning following the crash, while investigations have been launched to establish the cause.

The Boeing 737 operated by Cuban airline Cubana de Aviacion is thought to have had 110 people on board, including six crew members and was on its way to the city of Holguin in eastern Cuba.

It ploughed into a farm field soon after take-off and residents nearby reported sounds of an "explosion".

Firefighters then tackled a fire coming from the destroyed aircraft, which had just left Jose Marti International Airport.

Photos showed the wings of the plane wedged between scorched trees and the main fuselage completely destroyed.

'High number of victims'

Cuba's President Miguel Diaz-Canel, third from left, walks away from the site where a Boeing 737 plummeted into a yuca field with more than 100 passengers on board, in Havana, Cuba | Image: Enrique de la Osa/AP/Press Association Images

Government officials and Cuban president Miguel Diaz-Canel soon visited the crash site and told reporters there was "a high number of victims".

He was quoted as saying: "There has been an unfortunate aviation accident. The news is not very promising, it seems that there is a high number of victims."

He later confirmed the fire had been put out and authorities were identifying the bodies of the dead and that an investigation had been opened into the crash.

Despite the reports of three survivors, a worker at Havana's Calixto Garcia hospital told the Reuters news agency three people arrived at the hospital but one had died from burns and other trauma.

They said the other two were in a serious condition.

Six Mexican crew members were operating the flight, according to an employee of the small Mexican charter company Global Air, which is thought to own the aircraft.

The last major plane crash in Cuba took place in July 1997, when an Antonov-24 passenger plane fell into the sea off Santiago de Cuba. All 44 on board were killed.