A Cairo-bound EgyptAir flight that went down in the Mediterranean Sea with 66 aboard early Thursday hours after departing from Paris zig-zagged sharply before plunging, according to aviation officials, who said terrorism cannot be ruled out.
Government officials from France, Greece and Egypt spoke at separate news conferences even as boats and ships from several countries were scouring the waters off of the Greek island of Karpathos, near where a witness reported seeing a fireball in the sky.
Speaking from Cairo, Egyptian Minister of Aviation Sherif Fathy said all officials can confirm for now is that the AirBus 320, which left Charles de Gaulle Airport at 11:09 p.m. local time Wednesday and was due in Cairo at 3:15 a.m., "vanished."
"I'm not excluding any theory," Fathy said. “I’m also going to use the term ‘vanished’ plane until we find the wreckage of the plane -- if there is any wreckage -- and until we know what happened for sure.
Greek officials say the plane banked and spun sharply just before dropping.
"The plane carried out a 90-degree turn to the left and a 360-degree turn to the right, falling from 37,000 to 15,000 feet and the signal was lost at around 10,000 feet," Greece’s Defense Minister Panos Kammenos told a news conference Thursday.