French forces secured the site of a crashed Air Algerie flight in Mali, and found one flight recorder but no survivors, French President Francoise Hollande said Friday.
Wreckage of the jet was found in a “disintegrated state” in northern Mali, he said, making it the third major international aviation disaster in recent days.
“Regrettably, there were no survivors. I share the pain of the families, who are going through terrible hardship,” he said.
Hollande said the families of the French nationals aboard the plane — the largest group from any one nation — would be welcomed to the Foreign Ministry Saturday to be given all the latest information.
Airline authorities said Flight 5017 was carrying 116 people when it took off early Thursday from Burkina Faso to Algeria.
Less than an hour into the flight, the aircraft, an MD-83, disappeared from radar after changing its flight path because of bad weather, officials said.
The one “black box” recorder found so far is being taken to Gao, Mali, and will be examined as soon as possible, Hollande said.
“What we already know is that the plane’s debris is concentrated in a limited area,” he said.