Thursday, July 2, 2009

Comoros crash survivor returns to family in Paris

LE BOURGET, France (AP) — A young girl believed to be the only survivor of an Indian Ocean plane crash flew back to Paris from the Comoros Islands on Thursday to the waiting arms of her father.

Bahia Bakari, 14, returned to France on a plane carrying a government minister and other French officials. The Falcon-900 jet with medical facilities aboard left the archipelago nation of the Comoros, a former French colony, and arrived at Le Bourget airport just north of Paris.

Yemenia Flight 626 crashed Tuesday morning off Comoros amid heavy winds, and Bahia, described by her father as a fragile girl who could barely swim, spent over 13 hours in the water clinging to plane wreckage before she was rescued.

The other 152 people on the plane, including her mother, are presumed dead. It is not clear that Bahia knows her mother is dead because her uncle who visited her Wednesday at a Comoros hospital was too heartbroken to break the news. Instead, he told Bahia that her mother was also recovering.

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