Debris was first identified as plane wreckage, but when searchers got closer they realized their mistake
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The search for EgyptAir Flight 804 is continuing after reports that the plane’s wreckage had been found turned out to be false.
When searchers got close to debris found in the Mediterranean Sea they realized it didn’t come from the missing airliner, EgyptAir’s Vice Chairman Ahmed Adel told CNN.
The Airbus A320, which had 66 people on board, disappeared early Thursday as it flew from Paris to Cairo. Earlier, Adel told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour that the plane’s wreckage had been found.
Missing EgyptAir MS804
“We stand corrected on finding the wreckage because what we identified is not a part of our plane. So the search and rescue is still going on,” Adel told CNN’s “The Lead with Jake Tapper.”
Adel said EgyptAir is not involved in the search and is getting its information from Greek authorities and the Egyptian military, but he didn’t give details on why the debris found in the water was said to be from the plane or how that information was gathered.
The plane was carrying 56 passengers and 10 crew and security officers.
Earlier, a spokesman for Greece’s Hellenic National Defense general staff had said an Egyptian search aircraft spotted two floating objects 210 nautical miles southeast of Crete. It’s unclear whether those objects were part of the wreckage described by Adel.
Speculation has centered on the possibility of a terrorist attack.
“It’s very difficult to come up with a scenario that jibes with some sort of catastrophic failure. (The evidence so far) leads us down the road to a deliberate act,” CNN aviation analyst Miles O’Brien said.
Egyptian Civil Aviation Minister Sharif Fathi said technical failures and terror each are possible explanations.