The Latest: Egypt: No survivors from Russian plane crash

Relatives react after a Russian airliner with 217 passengers and seven crew aboard crashed, as people gather at Russian airline Kogalymavia’s information desk at Pulkovo airport in St.Petersburg, Russia, Saturday, Oct. 31, 2015. Russia's civil air agency is expected to have a news conference shortly to talk about the Russian Metrojet passenger plane that Egyptian authorities say has crashed in Egypt's Sinai peninsula.(AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky)

CAIRO, Egypt (AP) – The latest news on a Russian passenger plane that has crashed on a flight from Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, to St. Petersburg, Russia.

2:15 p.m.

Several Egyptian military and security officials say there are no survivors from the Russian passenger plane carrying 224 people that crashed into Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula.

The officials all spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief the media. Aviation experts have reached the crash site near the city of el-Arish.

Officials say all the victims in Saturday’s Metrojet plane crash were Russian citizens.

2 p.m.

Egypt’s civil aviation minister says an investigative team has arrived at the Russian plane crash site in the Sinai peninsula to examine the debris and try to locate the flight’s data and cockpit voice recorders, commonly known as the black box.

Egyptian officials say the pilot of the Russian airliner that crashed early Saturday had reported technical difficulties and wanted to make an emergency landing before losing contact with air traffic controllers.

Adel Mahgoub, chairman of the state company that runs Egypt’s civilian airports, said the plane had successfully undergone technical checks at Sharm el-Sheikh’s airport before taking off. He said experts were going there to view security camera footage of the Metrojet plane at the airport.

The plane, carrying 217 passengers and 7 crew, all Russians, went down in an area where Egypt has been fighting an Islamic insurgency.

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1:50 p.m.

The Kremlin has declared Nov. 1 a day of mourning for those who died in a Russian plane crash in Egypt’s Sinai peninsula.

Adel Mahgoub, chairman of the state company that runs Egypt’s civilian airports, said all 217 passengers and seven crew on the Metrojet flight Saturday from Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt to St. Petersburg were Russian citizens. The plane has crashed but there is no report yet on any death toll.

Russia’s Premier League says all its soccer matches this week would begin with a minute of silence for the crash victims.

Roughly three million Russian tourists come to Egypt every year – nearly a third of all of the country’s visitors in 2014 – mostly to Red Sea resorts in Sinai or in mainland Egypt.

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1:30 p.m.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered Russian emergency officials to fly immediately to the site of the Russian plane crash in Egypt’s Sinai peninsula.

Russia’s Emergencies Minister Vladimir Puchkov will coordinate the search and rescue operation in Egypt, the ministry said Saturday.

Authorities say the plane was carrying 217 passengers and 7 crew members from the Egyptian city of Sharm el-Sheikh, a popular tourist resort for Russians, back to St. Petersburg.

1:10 p.m.

Russia’s Investigative Committee, the country’s top investigative body, has opened an investigation into the crash of a Russian passenger jet in Egypt’s Sinai peninsula for possible violations of flight safety procedures.

Committee spokesman Sergei Markin made the announcement in a statement Saturday.

An Egyptian aviation official says the pilot of Metrojet Flight 7K9268 had reported technical difficulties early Saturday and planned an emergency landing at the nearest airport before losing contact with Egyptian air traffic controllers and crashing.

Authorities say the plane was carrying 217 passengers and 7 crew members from Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, to St. Petersburg.

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12:40 p.m.

An Egyptian aviation official says the pilot of the Russian airliner that crashed in the Sinai Peninsula had reported technical difficulties before losing contact with air traffic controllers.

Ayman al-Muqadem, a member of the Aviation Incidents Committee, said the pilot had reported his intention to attempt to land at the nearest airport.

Egyptian authorities say the Metrojet plane took off early Saturday from Sharm el-Sheikh, a popular Red Sea tourist destination, heading for St. Petersburg carrying 217 passengers and 7 crew members.

Plane tracking website Flight Radar said the flight disappeared from radar 23 minutes after takeoff. Egyptian authorities say it crashed in Egypt’s Sinai peninsula. The crash site is in an area where the government is fighting an Islamic insurgency.

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12:25 p.m.

Egyptian authorities say the wreckage of a Russian passenger jet has been found in area where Egyptian forces are fighting an Islamic militant insurgency.

Egyptian security forces have been waging major operations against a burgeoning insurgency in the northern Sinai peninsula, including the city of el-Arish. Egyptian officials say the wreckage was found in the Hassana area south of el-Arish.

The long-restive northern Sinai has seen a spike in attacks targeting security forces since the military overthrow of Islamist President Mohammed Morsi in 2013. An Islamic State affiliate has claimed responsibility for many of the deadly attacks. The Egyptian government has restricted journalists’ access to the area.

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11:55 a.m.

Russia’s civil air agency is expected to have a news conference shortly to talk about the Russian Metrojet passenger plane that Egyptian authorities say has crashed in Egypt’s Sinai peninsula.

Officials were gathering at a hotel adjacent to the St. Petersburg airport, where Egyptian officials say the plane was heading with 217 passengers and 7 crew members.

The plane took off early Saturday from Sharm el-Sheikh, a popular Red Sea tourist destination for Russians. Plane tracking website Flight Radar said Metrojet flight #7K9268 disappeared over Egypt 23 minutes after takeoff.

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11:15 a.m.

Egypt’s Ministry of Civil Aviation has confirmed that a Russian passenger plane has crashed in the Sinai peninsula.

The ministry said earlier Saturday it had lost contact with a Russian aircraft carrying 217 passengers and 7 crew members.

A statement carried by Egypt’s state-run MENA news agency says the plane took off from Sinai’s Sharm el-Sheikh, a popular destination for Russian tourists, at 5:51 a.m. Saturday and disappeared from radar screens 23 minutes after takeoff.

It said the aircraft was bound for St. Petersburg in Russia. A search and rescue team is looking for the plane.

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