Russian passenger jet crashes over Sinai LIVE UPDATES
Published time: 31 Oct, 2015 08:40Edited time: 31 Oct, 2015 10:20
A passenger plane belonging to a small Russian airline, which was flying over 220 people from an Egyptian resort, Sharm El-Sheikh to Saint Petersburg, has crashed over Sinai. Rescue operation is underway.
• 31 October 2015
President Putin has declared November 1 a day of mourning, the Kremlin’s press office reports.
• 11:20 GMT
The bodies of all 17 children aboard the Kolavia flights have been pulled from the wreckage, Egypt’s aviation authority reports.
• 11:11 GMT
Egypt’s aviation authority is now refuting earlier claims that on-board recording devices were uncovered in the search of the crash site.
Reuters, however, says the black boxes were indeed found by the rescue workers, citing security sources at the site.
• 11:10 GMT
Relatives of the deceased are gathering at the Pulkovo airport. A help center has been set up to assist them.
• 10:55 GMT
The black boxes have been uncovered at the scene of the Kolavia A321 crash, Al Jazeera reports, citing sources on the ground.
• 10:41 GMT
The Russian Emergencies Ministry held an urgent meeting over the plane crash in Sinai to answer questions.
A total of five planes with specialists in various fields are now reportedly headed to Egypt.
• 10:37 GMT
Approximately 100 bodies have been pulled out of the wreckage by the search and rescue teams, TASS was told by an officer on-site.
Authorities say it is « too soon to determine the cause » of the crash, according to Reuters.
« I now see a tragic scene. A lot of dead on the ground and many died whilst strapped to their seats, » the officer said. « The plane split into two, a small part on the tail end that burned and a larger part that crashed into a rock. We have extracted at least 100 bodies and the rest are still inside. »
• 10:21 GMT
A criminal investigation has been launched to determine if any negligence or failures to observe proper procedure happened before takeoff, according to the Emergencies Ministry. The ministry’s planes carrying investigators are currently on their way to Egypt.
• 10:07 GMT
At least five children have been found dead, out of a total of 17 aboard the plane, rescue teams report.
The aircraft split in two.
Other bodies can be seen still strapped to their seats.
President Vladimir Putin has expressed his deepest condolences to the families of those who perished in the tragic crash.
• 19:48 GMT
Egyptian Prime Minister Sherif Ismail visited the Russian embassy in Cairo and expressed his deepest condolences to the ambassador. He promised to lend all necessary assistance to Russia in the investigation of the plane crash, Egyptian media reported. The prime minister confirmed that Egypt is in close contact with Russia and the two countries are fully coordinating their actions for the inquiry.
• 19:22 GMT
US Secretary of State John Kerry extended his condolences “to the families and friends of the victims” of the Russian plane crush in Sinai during a telephone conversation with his Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov. Kerry also offered “US assistance, if it is needed,” deputy head of the US State Department press-service, Mark Toner, said.
• 19:17 GMT
Ireland offered “assistance in the investigation of the causes of the tragedy” with its aviation investigations authority sending a corresponding official proposal to Egypt, TASS reports. The crashed Airbus A321 was formally registered in Ireland.
• 19:16 GMT
First video from 7K9268 A321 crash site in Sinai