Algerian Airline Disappears From Radar

Air navigation services lost track of Swiftair MD-83, Flight AH5017 around 50 minutes into the flight after the crew reportedly asked to change course due to a storm.


"The plane disappeared at Gao in Mali, 500 kilometres from the Algerian border. Several nationalities are among the victims," said Algeria Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal


The airline was travelling from Ouagadougou, the capital of the West African nation of Burkina Faso, to Algiers before it lost contact with Algerian aviation authorities around 1.55am GMT


“The plane was not far from the Algerian frontier when the crew was asked to make a detour because of poor visibility and to prevent the risk of collision with another aircraft on the Algiers-Bamako route,” said the airline authorities.


Burkina Faso Transport Minister Jean Bertin Ouedrago has confirmed that most passengers (50) in the plane were of French nationality


Two Mirage 2000 jets based in Africa were however dispatched to try to locate the plane.


“They will search an area from its last known location along its probable route,” said a French army spokesman


Flight AH5017 is owned by Spanish private airline Swiftair and operated by Air Algerie.


Source The Gurdian

By Morgan Mueke

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