No sign yet of 'terrorist act' in Russian plane crash: Egyptian investigator

CAIRO - A preliminary investigation into the crash of a Russian passenger plane has found no indication yet of any "illegal or terrorist act," Egypt's chief investigator said in a statement released Monday.

See Full Article

The vaguely worded statement by Ayman el-Muqadam said the investigation committee so far has not found "any evidence" indicating foul play in the Oct. 31 downing of the plane, killing all 224 people onboard, mostly Russian vacationers returning home from the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh. The committee is "continuing its work," it said.

Russia has said an explosive device had been placed onboard the Airbus A321-200 and the Sinai branch of the Islamic State group has claimed responsibility. The crash led Russia to suspend all flights to and from Egypt, dealing a heavy blow to the country's vital tourism industry.

El-Muqadam said the investigating committee completed its preliminary report Sunday evening, which contained all available information that will be further investigated.

He said the search for wreckage extended more than 16 kilometres (10 miles) from the main crash site and that the committee provided all parties that are part of the investigation, including the insurance company and Russian working teams, the chance to examine the wreckage.

The investigators analyzed the plane's 38 computers and two engine computers and is currently checking the technical details of the plane and repairs carried out since it was manufactured in May 1997.

El-Muqadam said the investigation committee made 15 visits to the crash site, and the team was co-ordinating with the air force to move the wreckage to a safe location in Cairo for further study.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov declined to comment directly on the Egyptian statement, but told reporters in a conference call, "I can remind you of the conclusion of our experts from the special services, who came to the conclusion that it was a terrorist action."

Aside from a joint technical investigation into the crash by experts from Egypt, Russia, France and Ireland, the Egyptian authorities also opened an investigation into a possible security breach or infiltration by militants of the Sharm el-Sheikh airport staff, security officials have said.

That investigation has focused on baggage handlers, their security supervisors and also personnel involved in aircraft catering, according to the officials.

-----

Associated Press writer Jim Heintz in Moscow contributed to this report.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Bautista leads Jays past Yankees in likely final home game

    Canada News CBC News
    Jose Bautista had two hits, drove in one run and scored another to help lift the Blue Jays to a 9-5 win over the New York Yankees on Sunday in what was likely his final home game in a Toronto uniform. Source
  • 1 dead, 7 hurt in Tennessee church shooting

    World News Toronto Sun
    NASHVILLE — A masked gunman entered a church in Tennessee on Sunday and opened fire, killing at least one person and injuring seven others before apparently shooting himself, an official said. Don Aaron, spokesman for the Metro Nashville Police Department, said the gunman arrived at the parking lot in a blue vehicle as services were ending at the Burnette Chapel Church of Christ in the neighbourhood of Antioch. Source
  • Mass exodus of Rohingya slowing down but many still trying to flee Myanmar

    World News CBC News
    The massive exodus of Rohingya Muslims fleeing Myanmar to escape brutal persecution appears to have slowed down, but several recent refugees say tens of thousands more are huddled near beaches or in forests waiting to escape. Source
  • Airstrikes hit Syria's Aleppo despite ceasefire

    World News CTV News
    BEIRUT -- Airstrikes have targeted rural Aleppo in northern Syria Sunday for the first time in months since a cease-fire took hold in the province, killing one, activists and a war monitoring group said. Also Sunday, the Central Military Media, affiliated with the Syrian government, reported that Iranian drones successfully struck vehicles of the Islamic State group along the Syria-Iraq border in the south. Source
  • Toronto trust-funder Blake Leibel accused of torture killing

    World News Toronto Sun
    — “People come to Los Angeles to be someone else. And when you have that little self-esteem, terrible things are bound to happen.”— Black Dahlia author James Ellroy ••• Toronto trust-funder Blake Leibel’s bleak existence consists of hours of nothingness in the Los Angeles County Jail. Source
  • UN council to discuss report calling on Canada to address anti-black racism

    Canada News CTV News
    NEW YORK, United Nations -- The UN Human Rights Council is set to discuss a report on issues affecting African-Canadians that makes recommendations to the federal government, including that it apologize for slavery and consider providing reparations for historical injustices. Source
  • Hurricane Maria set Puerto Rico back decades: official

    World News CTV News
    SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -- Puerto Rico's nonvoting representative in the U.S. Congress said Sunday that Hurricane Maria's destruction has set the island back decades, even as authorities worked to assess the extent of the damage. Source
  • Baghdad orders Kurdistan region to hand over borders, ports

    World News CTV News
    BAGHDAD -- Iraq's central government in Baghdad ordered the country's Kurdish region to hand over all border crossings and airports to federal government control late Sunday night, hours before the region is set to carry out a controversial referendum on support for independence. Source
  • Engineers inspecting Puerto Rico's cracked dam that could 'collapse at any minute'

    World News CBC News
    Puerto Rico's government says engineers will inspect the Guajataca Dam on Sunday to determine the extent of damage inflicted by Hurricane Maria last week. The dam in the northwest corner of the island was cracked, but had not burst by late Saturday. Source
  • Merkel wins 4th term but nationalists surge in German vote

    World News Toronto Sun
    BERLIN — Chancellor Angela Merkel was widely expected to win a fourth term in office as Germans went to the polls on Sunday in an election that is also likely to see the farthest right-wing party in 60 years, the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany, win seats in parliament. Source