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Miracle as boy, 9, survives plane crash which killed all other 103 people on board – World News

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An Afriqiyah Airways plane exploded and disintegrated in the air as it approached Tripoli Airport in Libya – killing 103 passengers and leaving nine-year-old Dutch boy Ruben van Assouw its sole survivor

Ruben van Assouw, nine, was aboard a flight returning from a safari holiday in South Africa with his family when their plane crashed

Ruben van Assouw, nine, was aboard a flight returning from a safari holiday in South Africa with his family when their plane crashed (

Image: REUTERS)

A nine-year-old boy miraculously survived a plane crash that killed all 103 other passengers including his parents and brother.

Ruben van Assouw, nine, from the Netherlands, was found still strapped into his seat surrounded by aircraft debris after surviving the Afriqiyah Airways crash in May 2010.

At the time it made Ruben one of just 14 sole survivors of serious plane crashes.

Rescue teams found the nine-year-old lad in the wreckage of the Libyan-owned Airbus A330-200 – which disintegrated on its approach to Tripoli airport in May 2010, the Daily Star reports.

He was admitted to hospital where medics operated on him for four hours after his terrifying ordeal.

His legs were severely impacted and broken in several places and couldn’t move parts of his injured body, with fears his brain may have been bruised.

The plane reportedly disintegrated as it approached Tripol Airport
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Image:

AFP via Getty Images)

Ruben was operated on for four hours after the crash
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Image:

REUTERS)

His parents were sadly pronounced dead from the crash, reports Daily Mail.

It was reported that when he was asked by medics where he was from, Ruben managed to mumble: “Holland, Holland.”

Afriqiyah Airways confirmed that two Britons and an Irish citizen were among those who had died when Flight 771 from Johannesburg, South Africa, erupted as it came in to land at Tripoli, Libya.

Two Brits and an Irish citizen were also on board
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Image:

AFP via Getty Images)

A source commented: “It’s an absolute miracle that he got out.”

“The plane crashed next to the runway. It was around a metre away.

“The body of the plane completely disintegrated, meaning most people would have died straight away.”

It was reported that the pilot was said to have warned air traffic controllers that there was an issue as he approached Tripoli airport.

The passengers would have died immediately, one source said at the time
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Image:

AFP via Getty Images)

Officials said at the time that weather conditions and visibility were good and ruled out the possibility of terrorism.

Close relatives issued a statement confirming extended family would be looking after Ruben and requesting to not be contacted by the media, reports NBC News.

Tilburg mayor Ivo Opstelten said on Dutch television: “Let’s make sure he can catch his breath peacefully in the arms of relatives.

Ruben’s brother was also in the crash
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Image:

AFP/Getty Images)

The child and his family need to find “a kind of balance with each other, so they can start sketching a future.”

Ruben attended the Yore elementary school in Tilburg. The school director Elly Sebregts said at the time: “When he comes back — we don’t know exactly how things are going to go — but when he comes back to school, we’re going to take awfully good care of him.

“That’s the school’s job, I think. What we can do for him, in the school sphere, we will do.”

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