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Pilot dies in China air show crash

A pilot has died after an air force jet nose-dived and crashed at an air show in China.

Footage aired by China Central Television showed the jet sputtering and then plunging into a field outside the northern city of Xi'an as one of the pilots ejected from the cockpit and landed beneath an open parachute.

Only one parachute was seen opening, and the plane, a two-seater JH-7 Flying Leopard fighter-bomber, burst into flames on crashing. The other pilot's seat appeared not to have ejected.

Jin Qiansheng, an official with the Yanliang National Aviation Hi-tech Industrial Base, announced the pilot's death at the air show before a minute's silence was observed, the official Xinhua News Agency said.

China rarely releases information about military accidents, but the public nature of the crash and the rapid spread on the internet of images of it happening made it impossible to keep secret.

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From Belfast Telegraph