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‘Debris found’ from EgyptAir plane

A relative of a passenger on an EgyptAir flight that crashed early Thursday puts her hand on the window from inside a bus at Cairo International Airport, Egypt, Thursday, May 19, 2016.

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Relatives of some of the victims gathered at Cairo airport on Thursday, and some remained on Friday

Egypt’s military and national airline say debris from the crashed EgyptAir flight has been recovered in the Mediterranean.

Flight MS804 was en route from Paris to Cairo with 66 passengers and crew when it vanished early on Thursday.

Egypt’s army spokesman said wreckage and passenger belongings were found 290km (180 miles) off the coast of Alexandria in Egypt.

EgyptAir also confirmed the discovery to the BBC.

Greek, Egyptian, French and UK military units have been taking part in a search operation near Greece’s Karpathos island.

Greece said radar showed the Airbus A320 had made two sharp turns and dropped more than 25,000ft (7,620m) before plunging into the sea.

Egypt says the plane was more likely to have been brought down by a terrorist act than a technical fault.

Most of the people on board Flight MS804 were from Egypt and France. A Briton was also among the passengers.

Initial reports late on Thursday, based on Egyptian officials’ comments that wreckage had been found, later proved unfounded and were dismissed by Greek officials.

Greece has not yet commented on the latest discovery.

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Egyptian military ships, assisted by several other nations, are scouring the vast area for any signs of the plane’s wreckage

So far, there has been “absolutely no indication” as to why the plane came down, French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said on Friday morning.

Three investigators from the French air accident investigation bureau, along with a technical adviser from Airbus, have joined the Egyptian inquiry.

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