Plane carrying Brazilian soccer players crashes, killing six

SAO PAULO, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- Six people, including four soccer players and the president of the Brazilian club Palmas, were killed Sunday when the plane in which they were traveling crashed in the state of Tocantins.

The Palmas club, which plays in the Brazilian Championship Serie D, reported in a statement that the pilot and 32-year-old club president Lucas Meira died in the crash along with players Guilherme Noe, 28, Lucas Praxedes, 23, Ranule, 27, and Marcos Molinari, 23.

The tragedy occurred after the aircraft took off from a runway in the rural municipality of Porto Nacional, Tocantins state, bound for the neighboring state of Goias to play against Vila Nova on Monday in the Green Cup tournament.

"We regret to report that there are no survivors," said the statement from the Palmas club.

The accident occurred at approximately 8:15 a.m. local time (1115 GMT), according to the local fire department.

Clubs from across the country have sent their condolences for the tragedy through social media.

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