Relatives of Bilal Dheini react at their home in the southern village of Kharayeb, Friday, July 25, 2014. (The Daily Star/Mohammed Zaatari)
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Dheini and his family were among at least 19 Lebanese citizens on board an Air Algerie flight that crashed in Mali Thursday. Of 110 passengers and six members of crew, there were no survivors. According to Dheini, Bilal had intended to resettle in Lebanon.Kharayeb has already lost 15 other residents to aviation disasters. Some died in two particularly notable incidents: In 2003, a charter flight crashed during takeoff from Cotonou, killing 151 of 163 passengers, most of them Lebanese, while in 2010, all 90 people aboard an Ethiopian Airlines plane were killed when the aircraft plunged into the sea shortly after taking off from Beirut's Rafik Hariri International Airport. The plane never made it to Beirut, an airport worker explained to his father.Like other families affected by the crash, the Akhdars were confused.
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