"The An-12B was is no state to fly because it failed to undergo timely technical servicing... that should have included work on extending its resources and exploitation time frame," Antonov said in a statement.

The Antonov firm was spread out across the former Soviet Union plane when the ill-fated plane was built in 1971.

Ukraine was the An-12B's designer. The plane itself was built in Uzbekistan and later registered in the neighbouring Central Asian state of Tajikistan.

It is both a civil and a military transport aircraft that conducted its first test flight in 1957.

The plane crashed just seconds after taking off from South Sudan's capital Juba, smashing into a farming community on an island on the White Nile river.

A spokesman for Antonov in Kiev said the company was now in contact with the aviation authorities of Tajikistan, believing they were responsible for the plane's upkeep.

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