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February 26, 2013

Hot Air Balloon Crash Kills 19 in Egypt

by VOA News

A hot air balloon has crashed near the Egyptian city of Luxor, killing 19 tourists on board.

Two other people, including the pilot, survived after the balloon caught fire and exploded Tuesday while traveling at an altitude of 300 meters over the west bank of the Nile River.

​​Officials said the dead included people from France, Britain and other countries.

The area where the balloon went down was a capital of ancient Egypt, and draws tourists to see temples, palaces and tombs, including the burial site of the pharaoh Tutankhamun. The United Nations cultural agency UNESCO designated it a World Heritage site in 1979.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.