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Airbus grounds Super Puma helicopters after 13 killed

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Airbus Helicopters said all commercial passenger flights of helicopters similar to the Super Puma that crashed off Norway on Friday have been suspended.

A H225 Super Puma ferrying passengers from a Norwegian oil platform crashed in the North Sea, likely killing all 13 people on board.

Britain and Norway said they were halting flights of the same type of helicopter, also known as the EC225LP.

Airbus Helicopters, a unit of Airbus Group, said the temporary ban extended to the whole fleet.

“Under these tragic circumstances, and until these elements are available, we are allied with the decision taken to put all commercial EC225LP passenger flights on hold,” the company said in a statement.

The helicopter went down around midday (local time) in the archipelago off the coast of Bergen, Norway’s second-biggest city.

Eleven bodies have been recovered and the two remaining people are presumed dead, rescue services said.Search and rescue operations were called off late Friday afternoon.

The aircraft was carrying 11 Norwegians, one Briton and one Italian, rescue services said.

The helicopter broke into pieces near a small island and parts of the wreck were found scattered on land and at sea.

Part of the helicopter was resting on the seabed under five to seven metres of water, around 20 metres from land.

The helicopter was returning from the Gullfaks B oil and gas platform, operated by Norwegian oil and gas company Statoil.

The area, just west of Bergen, has frequent helicopter traffic to and from offshore oil installations. Weather conditions on the day were normal.

Reuters/AFP

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Govt to present its policies and programmes Monday

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KATHMANDU — The government is preparing to present its policies and programs for the fiscal year 2018/19 at the Federal Parliament on Monday.

According to Joint Spokesperson at the Federal Parliament Secretariat Keshav Aryal, all preparations are over for the release of the government policies and programs to be made by the President Bidya Devi Bhandari from New Baneshwor-based Federal Parliament Building at 4:00 pm Monday.

President Bhandari would unveil the government policies and programs for the first time in the joint meeting of the Federal Parliament after the promulgation of the new constitution.

As per the constitution, the President can address any of the House meeting or the joint meeting of the Federal Parliaments and summon the lawmakers for their presence.

Vice President, top leaders of different political parties, high-ranking government officials, chiefs of the constitutional bodies, chiefs of the security bodies and chiefs of the diplomatic missions in Nepal are invited for the program.

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