Reuters International

SYDNEY (Reuters) - A light aircraft crashed while trying to land in Papua New Guinea's rugged Western province on Wednesday killing 12 people, Australian authorities and media said on Thursday.

The Sunbird Aviation aircraft crashed into swamp just short of the Kiunga airport runway, killing all passengers and the Australian pilot, according to Australian Broadcasting Corp.

More than 20 planes have crashed in Papua New Guinea since 2000, where the rugged terrain and shortage of connecting roads makes air travel crucial for many residents.

(Reporting by James Regan; Editing by Michael Perry)

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