Officials have claimed that there are no survivors from the Russian flight KGL9268, which crashed earlier this morning in central Sinai. The airliner was carrying 224 people when it crashed – 17 of them believed to be children.
Words: Daisy Greenaway, Subeditor: Mariya Savova
The flight departed from Red Sea resort Sharm el-Sheikh and was en route to St Petersburg, Russia when contact was lost 23 minutes after take-off. Wreckage was later found in Hasana. According to reports the plane had split in two – with one half burning up. One official was quoted: “I now see a tragic scene. A lot of dead on the ground and many died whilst strapped to their seats.”
It has been confirmed by the flight tracking service Flight Radar 24 that the plane was at an altitude of 31,000ft when it disappeared. Mikail Robertson, a spokesperson for the service, said that flight KGL9268 dropped fast, losing 1,500m in one minute before coverage was lost. Aviation official Ayman al-Mukadem said the pilot had reported technical difficulties before the plane went missing. Due to the altitude it is unlikely to have been hit from the ground, despite speculation concerning military involvement with local Jihadis who support the Islamic State.
Authorities have since located the “black box” and are working on recovering and identifying the bodies found in the wreckage. Vladimir Putin, the Russian President, has ordered rescue teams to be sent and for an official investigation to be launched. Sunday is to be a day of morning in the country.