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AirDisaster.Com News
Discuss this story in our forums! Updated: 03 January 2004, 2:31am ET (0731 GMT)

Egyptian plane with 141 aboard reported crashed.
AP
 
- ACCIDENT DETAILS - AirDisaster.Com Accident Database

A Flash Airlines Boeing 737, identical to the airline which crashed, is seen in this October, 2003 photo. (Bjorn van der Velpen/View Full Size)
CAIRO, Egypt - A charter airliner with 135 people aboard most of them French tourists crashed into the Red Sea shortly after takeoff early Saturday from the resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, according to airport officials in Cairo. No survivors were immediately found.

The Boeing 737 jet took off shortly before 5 a.m. (10 p.m. EST) and quickly disappeared from radar about seven miles south of the airport, airport officials said, speaking on customary condition of anonymity.

The crash occurred amid a week of heightened concerns about terrorist threats from the air that have led to increased security and canceled flights around the world.

But an initial statement from the Ministry of Civil Aviation called the crash an "accident" and said crews were searching for the wreckage. It gave no ideas on the possible cause.

The officials said 127 passengers and eight crew members were aboard the jet operated by the private Egyptian company Flash Airlines en route to Cairo, and most were French tourists.

Rescue teams rushed to the scene but found no immediate survivors.

A Guinean-registered Boeing 727, carrying mostly Lebanese passengers, plunged into the Atlantic Ocean off the West African nation of Benin on Dec. 25, killing at least 130 of the 161 people aboard.

Sharm el-Sheik is a popular Red Sea tourist resort that also frequently hosts major political and economic summits. Egypt has held several meetings on peace in the Middle East there, including one in which President Bush met with regional leaders in June over the "road map" plan toward creating a Palestinian state.


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