Air Algerie Wreckage Found: Five Canadians among 110 Deceased Passengers

By @snksounak on
A plane prepares to land
An Air Algerie Airways plane prepares to land at Houari Boumediene Airport in Algiers July 24, 2014. An Air Algerie flight crashed on Thursday en route from Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso to Algiers with 110 passengers on board, an Algerian aviation official said. Reuters/Louafi Larbi

There were five Canadians among 105 others on the Air Algerie flight when it crashed in Mali. There was an initial speculation about another plane mysteriously disappearing just like Malaysian Airline flight MH370 as it went off the radar on Thursday, July 24. Later, the remains of the plane were later found near the Burkina Faso border.

The five Canadians killed in the crash were from Quebec. Isabelle Prevost, a 35-year-old Canadian, was one of the five casualties. She was reportedly travelling with another family from Quebec that had two children and two adults. The family, which belonged to the Burkina Faso community, lived in Toronto. They were travelling from Burkina's capital Ouagadougou to Algiers. They were apparently going to attend the 50th anniversary of a relative. It was the first time Prevost was travelling abroad.

There is hardly any possibility of finding specific bodies in the accident as the crash resulted in complete destruction. "They found human remains and the wreckage of the plane totally burnt and scattered," said Burkina official Gen. Gilbert Diendere. Earlier there were conflicting reports of two different crash locations but Diendere confirmed that the wreckage had been found around 31 miles away from the Boulikessi village.

Diendere, a close associate of President Blaise Compaore, also said that the Burkina government was working with its Mali counterpart on the investigation. "We sent men with the agreement of the Mali government to the site and they found the wreckage of the plane with the help of the inhabitants of the area," he said.

Canada Prime Minister Stephen Harper expressed his condolences for the accident. "I am saddened to learn that Air Algérie Flight AH5017, carrying 110 passengers and six crew members on board, crashed in Mali," he said in a statement, "It is confirmed that Canadians are among the victims." Harper said that the Canada government would extend support for the victims' families "as required."

One of the residents in the village apparently saw the plane go down and reported it to the authorities.

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