An Algerian plane is missing after it disappeared from radar screens early Thursday with 116 people on board.
Air navigation services lost track of the Swiftair MD-83 about 50 minutes after takeoff from Ougadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, at 0155 GMT (9:55 p.m. EDT Wednesday), the official Algerian news agency told The Associated Press. That means that Air Algerie Flight 5017 had been missing for hours before the news was made public.
The plane's path from Ouagadougou, the capital of the west African nation of Burkina Faso, to Algiers wasn't immediately clear. Ougadougou is in a nearly straight line south of Algiers, passing over Mali where unrest continues in the north.
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Swiftair, a private Spanish airline, said the plane carrying 110 passengers and six crew left Burkina Faso for Algiers at 0117 GMT Thursday (9:17 p.m. EDT Wednesday), but had not arrived at the scheduled time of 0510 GMT (1:10 a.m. EDT Thursday).
Swiftair said it has not been possible to make contact with the plane.
The company said it was trying to ascertain what had happened to the plane.
It said the crew included two pilots and four cabin staff.
"In keeping with procedures, Air Algerie has launched its emergency plan," the APS news agency quoted the airline as saying.
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