Page last updated at 13:47 GMT, Friday, 14 May 2010 14:47 UK

Tributes paid to Libya plane crash Briton Nigel Peter

Nigel Peter: Pic courtesy of AirQuarius
Nigel Peter was on his way to Tripoli with a colleague

Tributes have been paid to a British man who was among those killed in a plane crash at Libya's Tripoli airport.

Nigel Peter, 47, was one of two Britons killed in the crash on Wednesday, in which 103 people died.

Mr Peter, a joint British-South African national who worked for an air charter firm, was a "compassionate" and "committed" man, said a colleague.

A South African who lived in Wales also died, as did a second unnamed Briton. A Dutch boy, nine, was the sole survivor.

The second British national to have died in the Afriqiyah Airways crash - which happened as the plane arrived in Tripoli from Johannesburg, South Africa - has not yet been named.

However next of kin have been told, said the UK Foreign Office.

Mr Peter was a senior manager with Johannesburg-based air charter firm AirQuarius.

You have lost a husband that was respected and admired by his peers and that loved you dearly
Message to Mr Peter's wife Yvonne, from his employer

He was on his way to Tripoli, on a trip that was meant to take place some weeks ago but was delayed by his "commitments to the business", said his company's manager.

According to media reports it is a second tragedy for his wife Yvonne, after one of the couple's sons was killed in a motorcycle accident nine years ago, aged 16.

AirQuarius general manager Michael Goodwin said: "Nigel was not only a highly committed and professional member of our team, but he was also blessed with compassion and an enduring light-hearted nature.

"Nigel was a significant contributor to our organisation and his loss will be felt in all aspects of our business."

He added that Mr Peter had "been really looking forward to going to Tripoli, and had been trying to do so for two weeks".

"Ironically his commitments to the business delayed his departure to that of flight 771.

"To Yvonne, you have lost a husband that was respected and admired by his peers and that loved you dearly."

VICTIMS' NATIONALITIES
59 Dutch
Seven South African
Two Libyan passengers + 11 Libyan crew members
Two Austrian
Two British
One German
One Zimbabwean
One French
One Irish
16 others
Source: Afriqiyah Airways

Mr Goodwin said the couple's surviving son Damen had "lost a father that was dedicated to his cause and always put his family first".

"Our thoughts and prayers are with you, we share this devastating loss with you both."

Mr Peter was travelling with a friend and business associate, Hans Wolfaardt, whose brother Erik is also employed by AirQuarius.

Mother-of-two Priscilla Collick, 52, from Waunarlwydd near Swansea, was also among the dead.

Ms Collick was a South African national who is understood to have lived in Swansea for almost 30 years. She had been visiting her mother in South Africa.

Foreign Secretary William Hague said he was "greatly saddened" by the crash.

The flight recorders have been recovered and handed over to analysts for clues to what brought down the plane.

Police and rescue workers wearing surgical masks and gloves have been combing the wreckage of the Airbus A330 near the runway, but the cause is not yet known.

The Libyan Transport Minister Mohammed Ali Zidan has ruled out terrorism.

Novelist killed

Meanwhile, the sole survivor - identified as Ruben van Assouwis - is undergoing treatment in hospital.

He had reportedly been flying back from South Africa after a safari with his family.

The Dutch foreign ministry said 70 Dutch nationals were killed in the crash. Afriqiyah Airways said the Dutch death toll was 59.

And Irish Foreign Minister Micheal Martin confirmed that an Irish woman was among the dead.

Novelist Bree O'Mara, 42, who lived in South Africa, had been due to meet British publishers to sign a contract for her latest book.

Other passengers included nationals from Libya, South Africa, Germany and France.

The plane had been carrying 93 passengers and 11 crew.

Afriqiyah Airways is a low-cost Libyan airline founded nine years ago and operates a relatively new fleet of Airbus aircraft.



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