224 Killed When Russia-Bound Flight Crashes in Egypt

A Russian aircraft bound for St. Petersburg crashed in a mountainous region of Egypt on Saturday, killing all 224 on board.
Kogalymavia Flight 7K9268 disappeared from radar 23 minutes after taking
off at 5:51 a.m. local time from Sharm El-Sheikh International Airport
in El Salam, Egypt, before crashing near al-Hassana, a mountainous area
in the Sinai Peninsula, said Egypt’s Civil Aviation Authority. An
Egyptian official had previously told local media that the plane briefly
lost contact but was safely in Turkish airspace.
The Russian embassy in Cairo said the 217 passengers and seven crew
members were killed. Egyptian authorities said the passengers were 214
Russian and three Ukrainians citizens.
Relatives of the passengers gathered at Pulkovo Airport in St. Petersburg as they frantically awaited news on the flight.
“I checked the radar, everything seemed to be fine,” one relative told
the Associated Press. “I came here, and when I came, I couldn’t find the
flight anywhere on the screen.”
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi is also returning to Egypt
following a visit to Bahrain. He expressed his condolences to Russia in a
statement.
While on a visit to Kyrgyzstan, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry expressed his condolences to the families of the victims.
“We don’t know any details about it but obviously the initial reports
represent tremendous tragedy, loss, and we extend our condolences to the
families and all those concerned,” he said.
Other travelers were shaken by the tragedy as well.
“I found out about the crash just 30 minutes before leaving my flat,”
one Russian at Pulkovo Airport, Lubov Kekles, told the Associated Press.
“I’m really scared and worried. I don’t even know what to say. It is
scary, so scary that I am even afraid of entering the airport. Honestly,
I don’t know what I will see there. The sadness of people? It is really
terrifying.”
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