An Ethiopian Airlines flight travelling from Addis Ababa to Nairobi with 157 people aboard crashed on Sunday, the company confirmed in a statement.
“It is confirmed it happened 08.44,” a spokesman who did not give his name, told the Reuters news agency.
The Boeing 737 plane is believed to have been carrying 149 passengers and eight crew members. It took off at 08:38 from Addis Ababa, in Ethiopia, the company said in a statement.
It crashed near the town of Bishoftu, 62 kilometres southeast of the capital Addis Ababa.
“At this time search and rescue operations are in progress and we have no confirmed information about survivors or any possible casualities,” the airline said.
“Ethiopian Airlines staff will be sent to the accident scene and will do everything possible to assist the emergency services,” it added.
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed offered his “deepest condolences to the families of those that have lost their loved ones,” his office said on Twitter.
The flight was scheduled to land in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, at 10:25, according to Flight Radar, a website tracking air traffic.
According to the website, the Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft had performed its first flight in October 2018.