Search teams recovered Monday two more dead bodies from a gorge in Pokhara city in central Nepal, where a Yeti Airlines passenger plane crashed the previous day, putting the death toll at 70 in the country's deadliest air disaster in three decades, police said.
Pokhara's police chief Ajaya K.C. said by phone Monday evening after the search operation stopped at nightfall that security personnel will scour the crash site again Tuesday to search for two others who are still unaccounted for.
Earlier Monday, searchers recovered the flight data and cockpit voice recorders of the plane carrying 72 people, including 15 foreigners, Bikram Gautam, Pokhara's top civil aviation official, told Kyodo News.
The so-called black boxes could hold the key to solving the mystery surrounding the crash that occurred during good weather conditions.
The government has formed a five-member panel to probe Sunday's crash.
Nepal's police and army personnel resumed the search Monday morning after having suspended it at nightfall Sunday.
Searchers have used ropes to drop down the 300-meter-deep gorge strewn with wreckage from the aircraft. Divers were called in to search the Seti River.
The police chief said all 70 bodies recovered from the crash site had been sent for autopsies, adding that at least 41 have been identified.
The ATR 72 turboprop was flying from the capital Kathmandu to Pokhara on Sunday morning when it crashed into the Seti River gorge near Pokhara International Airport.
The airport, built with Chinese loans and engineering, was inaugurated with fanfare by Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal on Jan. 1.
Of the 15 non-Nepali on board flight YT691, five were Indian, four were Russian and two were South Korean, according to Yeti Airlines.
There was also one passenger each from Argentina, Australia, France and Ireland. The remaining 53 passengers and four crew members were Nepali nationals.
Aviation officials have said weather was good in the area at the time of the crash and could not have been a factor, while an air traffic controller at the airport has also said the pilot had obtained a landing clearance and had not reported any issues.
Sunday's crash was Nepal's deadliest after the 1992 crash of a Pakistan International Airlines aircraft in Bhattedanda near Kathmandu that killed all 167 on board.
Pokhara is a major tourist destination in the Himalayan nation and is popular with trekking enthusiasts heading for the famed hiking trails of the Annapurna range of mountains.
In May last year, a small passenger plane operated by Yeti-subsidiary Tara Air crashed in a mountainous area shortly after taking off from Pokhara domestic airport, killing all 22 passengers and crew on board.
Yeti Airlines canceled all its flights scheduled for Monday after the government announced it would be a day of national mourning.