The flight made two abrupt turns as it dropped from 38,000 feet to 15,000 feet over the Mediterranean Sea early today. At 10,000 feet it vanished from radar with no distress call. The flight was carrying 66 passengers and crew, including two Canadians, from Paris to Cairo.
Egypt’s civil aviation minister Sherif Fathi says the likelihood that the crash was a terrorist act is “stronger” than the possibility of a mechanical malfunction. He said he doesn’t want to draw any conclusions, but says analysis points to terrorism as the greater probability.
The head of Russia’s top domestic security agency says “in all likelihood it was a terror attack.” Alexander Bortnikov called for joint action to track down those responsible for the “monstrous attack.” 224 people were killed last October when a Russian plane flying from Egypt crashed into the Sinai Peninsula. Moscow said that flight was brought down by an explosive device.
The Americans say it’s too early to tell for sure.
In a statement, Foreign Affairs Minister Stéphane Dion said “based on the information currently available, we confirm that two Canadian citizens are among the passengers on this flight.”