Islamic State claims responsibility for Russian plane crash in Egypt

CAIRO – An Islamic State-linked group in Egypt has reportedly claimed responsibility for downing a Russian passenger jet in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula. The statement was circulated on Twitter and also posted on the Aamaq website, which acts as a semi-official news agency for Islamic State.However, security sources in Egypt said that an initial examination suggests the plane suffered a technical fault. Russia’s transport minister has also urged caution and said that the claims “can’t be considered accurate”.It is also unclear whether militants in the region would have the capability to attack the plane, which was flying at 31,000ft. The Airbus A321, operated by Russian airline Kogalymavia, also known as Metrojet, took off from Sharm el-Sheikh shortly before 6am local time, bound for St Petersburg. It disappeared from radar some 23 minutes into the flight.The plane was found in the mountainous Hassana area, 22 miles (35km) south of the northern city of Arish. There were 214 Russians on board and three Ukrainians. Authorities say no one survived – despite earlier reports that voices had been heard from the wreckage. At least 150 bodies, many of whom were still strapped to their seats, have been recovered so far, including five children.


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