EgyptAir plane sent distress message before vanishing: airline

May 19, 2016 9:40 am
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Twenty-six foreigners were among the 56 passengers, including 15 French citizens, a Briton and a Canadian, EgyptAir said/AFP
Twenty-six foreigners were among the 56 passengers, including 15 French citizens, a Briton and a Canadian, EgyptAir said/AFP

, CAIRO, Egypt, May 19 – A missing EgyptAir flight sent a distress message before vanishing from radar screens on Thursday that was detected by the military, the airline said in a statement.

The message was received at 0226 GMT, less than 10 minutes before the flight disappeared, an EgyptAir official told AFP.

The plane was carrying 30 Egyptians and 15 French passengers, as well as an Algerian, a Belgian, a Briton, a Canadian, a Chadian, two Iraqis, a Kuwaiti, a Portuguese, a Saudi and a Sudanese, EgyptAir said in a statement.

A tweet on the airline’s official account said flight MS804 left Paris at 11:09pm (2109 GMT), “heading to Cairo (and) has disappeared from radar”.

Further tweets in Arabic said contact was lost at 2:45am Cairo time (0045 GMT), when the plane was just inside Egyptian airspace and at an altitude of 37,000 feet (11,000 metres).

The airline said in a statement that Egyptian military search and rescue teams were combing the area where the jet might have gone down.

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