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Posted: May 19, 2016

EgyptAir Flight MS804 crash: Here's what you need to know

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By Cox Media Group National Content Desk

CAIRO —

An EgyptAir flight carrying 66 people vanished from radar and crashed into the Mediterranean Sea, officials said early Thursday.

Here's what we know so far:

>>The latest coverage of EgyptAir MS804

1. The latest: More wreckage of the missing plane has been found, including body parts, passengers' belongings and passengers' seats, an EgyptAir official said around 4:50 p.m. local Cairo time Friday.

 Earlier in the day, an Egyptian military spokesman confirmed that officials found debris and luggage from the missing flight 180 miles north of the city of Alexandria. EgyptAir confirmed the news on social media.

The debris was found roughly five miles south of the area where the plane disappeared from radar around 2:45 a.m. local time Thursday.

One day earlier, Greek officials said they found two orange items believed to be from the missing plane. EgyptAir officials announced wreckage was found Thursday evening local time. Greek air safety officials later said the debris does not belong to a plane.

2. What happened? EgyptAir Flight MS804 from Paris to Cairo went missing about 2:45 a.m. Thursday local time, The Associated Press reports. Greece's defense minister said the plane, which reportedly was flying at 37,000 feet, lost altitude and made abrupt turns before it disappeared from radar. It was 10 miles into Egyptian airspace and about 175 miles north of Alexandria. 

While EgyptAir said via social media that "the reason of disappearance hasn't been yet confirmed" an official later said "terror was a strong possibility" for the crash.  There was no distress call, Egyptian Prime Minister Sherif Ismail told Egypt's state news agency. French President Francois Hollande added that "no hypothesis can be ruled out.

>> PHOTOS: EgyptAir Flight MS804 disappears over Mediterranean

3. What type of aircraft was it? The plane was an Airbus A320 manufactured in 2003, EgyptAir saidAccording to CNN, planes in the A320 family can carry up to 180 passengers. While International Bureau of Aviation President Phil Seymour said the planes have  "a fantastic safety record," there have been over a dozen crashes involving the A320.  

>>History of crashes involving Airbus A320

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4. Who was on board? According to EgyptAir, 56 passengers and 10 crew members were on the plane, including 30 Egyptians, 15 French, two Iraqis, and one each from Britain, Belgium, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Chad, Portugal, Algeria and Canada. Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Stéphane Dion said in a statement that two Canadians were on the flight.

 Among the passengers were one child and two babies, the AP reports.

One of the Canadians on the flight was identified by EgyptAir as Marwa Hamdy. No other details on Hamdy were provided.

The British passenger was identified by multiple outlets as 40-year-old Richard Osman, a Welsh-born geologist. 

In a statment, Kuwait's Foreign Ministry said Abdulmohsen al-Muteiri was on the flight. The Guardian reported al-Muteiri, a father of two, worked as a professor of economics and was headed to Cairo for a conference.

Family members told the newspaper Samar Ezzeldin, 27, was among the seven Egyption cabin crew members on the flight. She had recently gotten married.

French officials and Proctor & Gamble identified one of the passengers as Ahmed Helal, a plant manager at Procter & Gamble in Amiens, France.

According to CNN, others on the plane included Amgad Adib, a businessman in his late 40s, and Joao David e Silva, a 62-year-old father of four.

>> RELATED: The most famous, deadliest, oddest hijackings and how they ended

5. What do we know about the pilots? EgyptAir said the pilot had 6,275 flying hours, including 2,101 in the Airbus 320, and the co-pilot had 2,766.

The pilot was identified as 36-year-old Mohamed Saeed Shaqeer, The New York Times reported. His co-pilot was identified as 24-year-old Mohamed Mamdouh.

"An Egyptian Interior Ministry official said the men had no known political affiliations, and had passed their periodic background security checks," according to the Times.

>> RELATED: Timeline: 12 aviation mysteries

6. The investigation: The investigation is ongoing and likely to focus on finding the plane's black box. Aviation experts claim that it is likely terrorism is involved, but all scenarios are being examined.


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