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CNN: Ukrainian military plane shot down; all 49 aboard dead

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European leaders Saturday held telephone talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Ukrainian counterpart after a Ukrainian military plane was shot down by separatists, killing all 49 people on board, officials said.

The Ilyushin-76 military transport plane went down early Saturday while approaching an airport in the eastern Ukrainian city of Luhansk, said military spokesman Vladislav Seleznyov from the anti-terror operation unit.

Ukraine’s defense ministry said the plane, which was transporting military personnel, was shot down by insurgents using anti-aircraft machine guns.

The attack, which represents one of the bloodiest single events in that nation’s current period of turmoil, spurred a diplomatic flurry to limit further escalation of the crisis.