Algerian plane AH5017 crashed in Mali: UN Representative

DPA Algiers | Updated on July 24, 2014 Published on July 24, 2014

The missing Algerian plane went down in central Mali, a UN representative has said, contradicting earlier reports that it crashed in Niger.

The plane crashed between Gao and Tessalit, Brigadier General Koko Essien, the commander of a Timbuktu-based operation with the UN mission in Mali, tells dpa.

Malian civil aviation authorities said they were on alert.

“For the moment, we cannot speak of a crash, only of the disappearance of the plane from radars,” a representative told dpa by telephone.

The Algerian civil aviation lost contact with the plane carrying 110 passengers after its take-off from Burkina Faso.

The Air Algerie Airbus A320 was on its way from Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso’s capital, to Algiers when it went missing, the state-owned airline said.

Contact with flight AH5017 was lost 50 minutes after its take-off from the Ouagadougou airport, the airline said.

Private Algerian television station Elnahar reported that the plane had crashed after it crossed the airspace of Niamey, Niger’s capital.

There was no official comment on its report.

Air Algerie said it had started an emergency plan.

Meanwhile, the UN mission in Mali and French soldiers there were trying to locate the plane. A source in the UN mission said it does not yet have the flight coordinates or the aircraft’s position the moment it disappeared.

There was no confirmation the plane crashed in Mali, the source said.

The plane is chartered from the Spanish company Swiftair.

Crew on board are Spanish

The six crew members on board are Spaniards, say the Spanish pilots union Sepla and Spanish airline Swiftair.

Numerous French on missing flight: Minister

Numerous French passengers were aboard the missing Air Algerie flight, French Junior Transport Minister Frederic Cuvillier has said.

Published on July 24, 2014
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