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189 feared dead after Indonesian plane crash

Rescue operations in Indonesia
Members of a rescue team collect personal items and wreckage from a plane crash in Tanjung Priok, North Jakarta. Photo: Resmi Malau/AFP/Getty Images

A Lion Air Boeing 737 MAX 8 crashed into the ocean shortly after taking off from an airport in Jakarta, Indonesia, likely killing all 189 people on board, the AP reports.

The big picture: Indonesian airlines have been known for their spotty safety records, and bans on flights to Europe and the United States had only been lifted over the last few years. An Indonesian official said the pilot had requested to return to the airport just minutes after taking off, adding that the plane had experienced a technical issue on its previous flight.

Between the lines: The crash is noteworthy for being the first to involve the Boeing 737 MAX, which is a more powerful and efficient version of the popular 737. The aircraft is used on trans-Atlantic routes, and more than 4,700 are on order worldwide, Boeing says on its website.

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