Cairo: The Egyptian military today recovered more debris, passengers’ belongings, body parts, luggage and aircraft seats from the ill-fated EgyptAir jet, a day after the plane en route to Cairo from Paris crashed in the Mediterranean with 66 people on board.
“Egyptian Military and Marine Forces have discovered more debris, passengers’ belongings, body parts, luggage, and aircraft seats. Search is still in progress,” EgyptAir said on Facebook.
In Athens, Greece’s defence minister Panos Kammenos said a body part, seats and some items of luggage were found by military crews searching for the wreckage of the jet.
“A few hours earlier we were informed (by Egyptian authorities) that a body part, two seats and one or more items of luggage where found in the search area” north of the coastal Egyptian city of Alexandria, he told journalists.
The discovery of the wreckage of EgyptAir Flight MS804 near Alexandria comes as the navy continues to sweep the area looking for the plane’s black box and bodies.
There were no signs of survivors after the Airbus A320 “swerved and then plunged” into the Mediterranean. The plane, on its fifth journey of the day, was travelling at 37,000 feet when it disappeared from radar. It had made a stop in Tunisia before flying to Paris.
Soon after the wreckage was found, the Egyptian presidency expressed its “deep sadness and extreme regret” over the deaths of the people on board the jet, in the first official recognition of the tragic crash of the missing plane.
The plane lost contact with radar early yesterday above the Mediterranean Sea about 280 kms from the Egyptian seacoast at 02:30am (local time) as the flight was expected to arrive Cairo Airport at 03:15 am (local time).
The plane was carrying 56 passengers and 10 crew: two cockpit crew, five cabin crew and three security personnel.
EgyptAir said two babies and one child were on board.
Among the passengers were 30 Egyptians, 15 French, two Iraqis, and one person each from the UK, Belgium, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Chad, Portugal, Algeria and Canada.
The Egyptian navy, air force and army were searching the sea to the north of Egypt’s coast, with French, Greek, British and US support.
The plane made “sudden swerves” before dropping off radar over the Mediterranean, Kammenos said. It made a 90-degree turn left, and then dropped from 37,000 feet to 15,000 feet before swerving 360 degrees right.