Paris: French President Francois Hollande was stunned and shocked to learn of the deaths of 10 people, including eight French compatriots, in an accident involving two helicopters in Argentina, while they were taking part in the making of a television programme for TF1.
The yachtswoman Florence Arthaud, the Olympic swimming champion Camille Muffat and the boxing champion Alexis Vastine, who have done so much for France’s reputation, are among the victims, as are several members of the company ALP’s production team.
Our compatriots’ sudden loss is a source of huge sadness, the French President has said in a statement.
The President has extended his condolences to the victims’ families and friends and assured them of his full solidarity. The staff of the French Embassy in Argentina and the Foreign Ministry’s crisis unit have been mobilized to provide them with the necessary information and help.
Eight French nationals and two Argentine pilots were killed when 2 helicopters they were flying in collided and burst into flames moments after taking off near the remote settlement of Villa Castelli in northwestern Argentina on Monday.