Missing Air Algerie flight AH5017 has crashed, an Algerian aviation official has confirmed
It is not clear where the plane came down, but unofficial sources have been speculating.
Air traffic tracking company Flightradar said in a tweet it crashed in Niger.
Air navigators lost contact with flight AH5017, a McDonnell Douglas MD-83 fifty minutes after takeoff, approximately four and a half hours ago over Northern Mali. Terrorist attack? Stormy weather? What? (Image courtesy of Air Algerie.)
The Associated Press is reporting that passenger plane Air Algerie flight AH5017 traveling from Burkina Faso to Algiers has disappeared from the radar while flying over Malian airspace.
Air navigators lost contact with flight AH5017 approximately four hours ago, i.e., fifty minutes after takeoff.
Pursuant to a press release from Air Algerie (below), there are 112 passengers and 7 crewmembers onboard.
AH5017 departed Burkina Faso 9:17 p.m. Wednesday and was scheduled to touch down in Algiers at 1:10 a.m., Thursday.
In the meantime, SwiftAir is attempting to ascertain the status of the passenger plane.
According to the Wall Street Journal AH5017 disappeared over Northern Mali where Islamic terrorists are fighting the Malian government and French forces.
…French Secretary of Transport Frédéric Cuvillier told reporters the plane disappeared over Northern Mali, where Islamist militants are fighting the Malian government and French forces. Numerous French nationals were probably aboard the missing plane, Mr. Cuvillier said….
In addition to the French nationals, members of the crew are Spanish nationals.
… On Wednesday, forty-eight people died and 10 were injured after a TransAsia Airways 6702.TW -5.46% plane went down in the outlying Penghu islands, off the coast of Taiwan.
The flight path of the missing Algerian jet isn’t yet clear, but Mr. Cuvillier said the plan disappeared over Northern Mali. The FAA has warned airlines to be extra vigilant when flying over Mali.
There is no indication the jet was shot down and no confirmation of a crash….
Air Algerie Press Release:
ALGER- Cent dix-neuf (119) passagers, parmi eux sept (7) membres d’équipage, étaient à bord de l’avion de la compagnie espagnole Swift Air affrété par Air Algérie et dont les services de navigation aérienne ont perdu le contact jeudi matin. “Un avion de la compagnie espagnole Swift Air, dont l’équipage est de nationalité espagnole, affrété par Air Algérie, assurant Ouagadougou-Alger, a disparu avec à son bord 119 passagers, dont 7 membres d’équipage”, indique jeudi un communiqué de la compagnie nationale. Air Algérie précise que cet avion a décollé d’Ouagadougou à 01h17 GMT et devait arriver à Alger à 05h11 GMT (6h11 heure locale). “Un dernier contact radar a eu lieu à 01h55 GMT en survolant la région de Gao” (Mali). A cet effet, “une cellule de crise, présidée par le ministre des Transports, a été installée au niveau de l’aéroport d’Alger”, ajoute-t-on de même source. Air Algérie a mis à la disposition des familles concernées par ce vol le numéro de téléphone (021 509491) pour tout renseignement.
ALGIERS-hundred and nineteen (119) passengers, among them seven (7) crew members were aboard the aircraft of the Spanish Air Swift company chartered by Air Algeria and whose air navigation services have lost contact Thursday morning. “An aircraft of Spanish airline Air Swift, with a crew of Spanish nationality, chartered by Air Algeria, ensuring Ouagadougou and Algiers, disappeared with 119 passengers on board, including seven crew members,” said a statement Thursday national company. Air Algeria states that this aircraft took off from Ouagadougou at 1:17 GMT and should arrive in Algiers 5:11 GMT (6:11 local time). “The last radar contact was at 1:55 GMT flying over the area of Gao” (Mali). For this purpose, “a crisis, chaired by the Minister of Transport, was installed at the Algiers airport,” adds the same source. Air Algeria has made available to the families affected by this flight telephone number (021 509491) for more information.