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Aviation official says,Russian plane broke apart ‘in the air’

The Russia interstate aviation minister said on Sunday that the plane crashed in Egypt broke up “in the air” strewing fragments across a wide area killing around 224 people on board.

The committee chief Viktor Sorochenko an international panel of experts from Russia, Egypt, France and Ireland was appointed on Saturday to head a panel of crash experts to Egypt.

He said. “The disintegration happened in the air and the fragments are strewn over a large area.” He also said that it was “too early to draw conclusions” about what caused the crash on Saturday, which killed all 224 people travelling from Egypt’s resort Sharm el-Sheikh to Saint-Petersburg.

President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi urged patience to determine the cause of Saturday’s crash, after the Islamic State jihadist group claimed it brought down the A-321 in Egypt’s restive Sinai Peninsula.

International investigators say they need to comb through an area of about 16 square kilometres in the Sinai Peninsula.

Investigators have discovered the plane’s “black box” flight recorder the Egyptian government said the contents were being analysed on Sunday.