Air Algerie AH5017 pilots asked to turn back due to bad weather.


New York (AirGuide Features - Inside Air Travel) Tue, Jul 29, 2014 - The French Foreign Minister, Laurent Fabius, has revealed that the pilots of an airliner that crashed in Mali last Thursday had asked to turn back. Mr Fabius said the crew of Air Algerie flight AH5017 requested to return to Burkina Faso after initially asking to change course due to bad weather. The plane's two flight data recorders have arrived in France. The jet was flying to Algeria when it crashed in Mali, killing all 118 aboard, including 54 French citizens. France has taken the leading role in the investigation. French flags flew at half-mast on Monday as the country began three days of mourning for the victims "What we know for sure is that the weather was bad that night, that the plane crew had asked to change route then to turn back before all contact was lost," Mr Fabius said on Monday. A team of French investigators is currently sifting through the plane's wreckage in Mali, but Mr Fabius said they were facing "extremely difficult conditions". "It's a long, fastidious and extremely complex job," he added. French, Malian and Dutch soldiers from a UN peacekeeping force (MINUSMA) have secured the site, about 80 km (50 miles) south of the Malian town of Gossi, near the Burkina Faso border. Earlier on Monday, a French official confirmed that the two flight data recorders had arrived in France and were now being examined by experts. One of the devices was retrieved almost as soon as rescuers arrived on the spot, while the second was found late Saturday. A source close to the investigation...

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