Algiers (Agencies): At least 100 passengers were reported killed, after a military plane crashed near the Boufarik airbase outside the Algerian capital, Algiers, media reports said.

A military plane carrying nearly 200 soldiers crashed shortly after taking off from the Boufarik base in Algeria, local media reports.

The radio report said the cause of the crash near an air base in Boufarik remains unclear. Algeria's state news agency also confirmed that a military plane crashed near the military base.

Algerian state news agency said the Soviet-designed Il-76 plane was headed for Bechar in southwest Algeria.

Emergency services have been dispatched to the site of the crash. . Boufarik is located in northern Algeria, near the Mediterranean sea, some 30 kilometres (20 miles) from the capital, Algiers.

Images posted by an Algerian website showed thick smoke coming out from the site where the plane, a Ilyushin Il-78, crashed.