An Air Algerie flight carrying 110 passengers and six crew members disappeared from radar early on Thursday morning between Burkina Faso and Algeria. CCTV and Algerian Ennahar TV report it went down in Niger.
A spokeswoman for Spanish private airline company, Swiftair, confirmed that it had lost contact with one of its planes operated by Air Algerie on Thursday. The plane was an Air Algerie MD-83, flight AH5017.
“Air navigation services have lost contact with an Air Algerie plane Thursday flying from Ouagadougou to Algiers, 50 minutes after take-off,”the airline said.
Swiftair said that there had been “no contact” with the missing aircraft since.
French Transport Minister, Frederic Cuvillier, told reporters that it was “likely many” French passengers were on board the flight.
“There are 110 passengers and 6 crew traveling on the plane, of which four are pilots and two cabin crew,” the Swiftair statement confirmed.
The six crew members are Spanish.
Burkina Faso’s transport minister confirmed to Reuters that the Air Algerie flight had asked to change course at 1:38 am GMT because of a storm.
Meanwhile, an Algerian aviation source, who wished to remain anonymous, told AFP that “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.”