OSLO:- A Russian helicopter with eight people on board crashed at sea in Norway’s Svalbard archipelago in the Arctic on Thursday, Norwegian rescue services said. The fate of those on board the helicopter was not immediately known. The aircraft went down two or three kilometres from Barentsburg, a Russian mining community in the archipelago, the rescue services said.

“We’ve only been informed that it went down at sea. We don’t know if it was a controlled landing,” an emergency services spokesman told AFP.

A Norwegian helicopter and rescue vessels were dispatched to the scene, he said, adding that no contact had been made with the chopper.