Uzbekistan's public prosecutor, Rashitjon Kadirov, said there were no indications that Tuesday's crash of the 28-year-old Yak-40, resulted from "terrorism", but a full investigation would be held. 

The aircraft crashed and then burst into flames on approaching Tashkent airport, on a flight from the southern city of Termez near Uzbekistan's border with Afghanistan, at 19:27pm (14:27 GMT) on Tuesday, Kadirov said. 

Its landing gear had apparently failed to deploy and it smashed into a concrete barrier, burst into flames and then fell into a river, he said. 

UN official killed

Among those killed was the UN's resident coordinator in
Uzbekistan, Richard Conroy, 56, and US citizen Richard Penner, who headed the Tashkent office of Washington-based humanitarian organisation World Concern, Kadirov said. 

Two Afghan citizens were also among the dead. 

The total of five crew members and 32 passengers, including a child, died in the crash.

Safety record

The 28-year-old Yak-40 had clocked about 37,000 hours of flying time and was shortly due to be taken out of service, Kadirov said. 

Yak-40s were first built in 1966 and designed for short-haul flights. They are still widely used throughout the former Soviet Union. 

The Yak-40 has one of the best safety records of any Soviet-built plane, although the financial difficulties of many airlines in post-Soviet countries have increased reliance on aging jets.