About 257 people were killed when a military plane crashed soon after takeoff in a farmland in northern Algeria on Wednesday.

The military plane crashed, immediately after takeoff.  An estimated 257 people were killed in this incident and an investigation has been opened, according to Algeria's Defense Ministry.  The cause of the crash is uncertain.

Mohammed Achour, chief spokesperson for Algeria's civil protection agency said: "The crash resulted in more than 257 deaths. We can't say exactly how many at this point".

 He said the plane was carrying soldiers. He added:  "The flight had just taken off from Boufarik, about 30km southwest of the capital Algiers, for a military base in Bechar in southwest Algeria, and was scheduled to make a stopover in Tindouf in southern Algeria".

  Achour also confirmed that the military transport plane crashed in an uninhabited agricultural farmland.