Searchers scouring the heavily traveled waters of the Mediterranean Sea for EgyptAir Flight 804 and the 66 people on board have found the plane’s wreckage, airline Vice Chairman Ahmed Adel told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour.
He did not elaborate on the condition of the wreckage, which the airline said was found Thursday near the Greek island of Karpathos. But Adel said the operation was turning into a search and recovery mission — language that often denotes a lack of survivors.
“Our main concern right now is taking care of the family and friends of all those who perished,” Adel told Amanpour. “We are now in the process of contacting next of kin. Once that process is complete, we will release the passenger manifest.”
The Airbus A320 carrying 56 passengers and 10 crew and security officers disappeared early Thursday over the Mediterranean as it flew from Paris to Cairo.
Earlier, a spokesman for Greece’s Hellenic National Defense General Staff had said an Egyptian search aircraft had spotted two floating objects 210 nautical miles southeast of Crete. It’s unclear whether those objects are part of the wreckage described by Adel.
Speculation has centered on the possibility of a terrorist attack.
“Planes today just don’t fall out of the sky,” CNN aviation analyst Miles O’Brien said.
Egyptian Civil Aviation Minister Sharif Fathi said technical failures and terror are each possible explanations.
“But if you analyze this situation properly, the possibility of having a different action aboard, of having a terror attack, is higher than having a technical problem,” Fathi said.