EgyptAir flight from Paris to Cairo missing
EgyptAir Flight 804 heading from Paris to Cairo has disappeared from radar with 66 people on board, the airline said.
According to EgyptAir’s Vice Chairman there were 56 passengers (53 adults, two infants, one child) and two cockpit crew, five cabin crew and three security on the flight.
The Vice Chairman initially told CNN that “there was no distress call” and that they “just lost contact” with MS804.
Sky News has since reported that the jet did make a distress call.
The New York Times has cited Ehab Mohy el-Deen, head of the Egyptian air navigation authority, as saying that Greek air traffic controllers notified their Egyptian counterparts that they had lost contact with the plane.
El-Deen said it was “too early to speculate on causes and outcomes, but this is not normal, of course.”
6 HOURS OVERDUE
In a statement on its website, Charles de Gaulle Airport said EgyptAir Flight 804 left Paris at 11:09 p.m. (local time) on Wednesday evening and lost contact with ground crews at 2.45 a.m. (local time), about 16km inside Egyptian airspace.
The flight was scheduled to arrive at Cairo Airport at 03:15 a.m. (local).
The 12-year-old Airbus A320-232 was about 40 minutes from its destination. It was the aircraft’s fifth flight of the day, including journeys to Asmara, Eritrea and Carthage in Tunisia.
The plane was flying at 37,000 feet when it disappeared shortly after entering Egyptian airspace, the airline tweeted.
The source said the Airbus A320 had 56 passengers and 10 crew members with nationalities confirmed as follows: 15 French, 30 Egyptian, one British, one Belgian, two Iraqis, one Kuwaiti, one Saudi, one Sudanese, one Chadian, one Portuguese, one Algerian and one Canadian.
Conditions were clear and calm when the plane crossed over the Mediterranean, according to CNN meteorologist Michael Guy.
SEARCH AND RESCUE OPERATIONS UNDERWAY
AP has reported that Greece is joining the search and rescue operation. Two aircraft, one C-130 Hercules and one early warning aircraft, have been dispatched, officials at the Hellenic national defence general staff told the news agency.
They said one frigate was also heading to the area, and helicopters are on standby on the southern island of Karpathos for potential rescue or recovery operations.
PASSENGERS’ FAMILIES ARRIVE AT CAIRO AIRPORT
EgyptAir has since announced that it is hosting the passengers’ families near at Cairo Airport and has provided doctors, translators and all other necessary services.
The French government has said that President Francois Hollande spoke with Egyptian president Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi by telephone, and they agreed to “closely cooperate to establish the circumstances” in which the EgyptAir flight disappeared.
The government statement cited Hollande as saying he shares the anxiety of families, in a written statement.
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