An EgyptAir passenger plane en route to Cairo crashed into the Mediterranean Sea on Thursday morning. The plane was carrying 56 passengers and 10 crewmembers.
Panos Kammenos, the Minister of Defense from Greece, revealed that the Airbus A320 “turned 90 degrees left and then 360 degrees to the right” before plunging from 37,000 feet to 15,000 feet and disappearing from Greek radars.
Greek officials recovered pieces of plastic and two orange items believed to be life preservers floating roughly 370km from the Greek island of Crete. However, Egyptian authorities have not confirmed that the debris found came from the plane.
Egyptian and Greek authorities are still searching for the fallen aircraft and investigating the cause of the crash.
The U.S., France, and UK have offered their assistance in the investigation.
While Egyptian Prime Minister Sharif Ismail said it was too early to determine whether it was a terrorist attack or a technical failure that brought the plane down, his Minister of Aviation, Sharif Fathy, said that an attack was likely the cause of the crash.
“If you analyze the situation properly the possibility of having a terror attack is higher than the possibility of it having a technical [problem],” he said.
Aleksandr Bortnikov, Russia’s security chief, similarly stated that a terrorist attack brought down the plane.
“Unfortunately, today there was another incident with an Egyptian Airlines plane. Apparently it is a terrorist attack which killed 66 people from 12 countries,” he said.
At the time of reporting, no terrorist group has claimed responsibility for the attack.
Among the passengers were 30 Egyptians, 15 French nationals, two Iraqis, and one from each of the following countries: Chad, Sudan, Algeria, UK, Belgium, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Portugal, and Canada.