- Plane crashed with 66 people on board
- Wreckage reportedly found in evening
- Flight was en route from Paris to Cairo
- French PM says "no theory can be ruled out"
- READ ALSO: What we know so far about flight MS804
- Experts say terror attack 'most likely' cause of crash
Family members of passengers and crew have been already informed and we extend our deepest sympathies to those affected.— EGYPTAIR (@EGYPTAIR) May 19, 2016
"US Commander Sixth Fleet is working with the Joint Rescue Coordination Center in Greece and the US Defense Attache in Athens, Greece to provide US Navy P-3 Orion support in the search of the missing Egyptian aircraft," the Navy said in a statement.
The surveillance plane had been sent from Naval Air Station Sigonella in Sicily.
Separately, the White House said President Barack Obama is being updated by counter-terrorism staff on investigations.
"The president asked to be updated throughout the day as the situation warrants, and directed administration officials to reach out to their international counterparts to offer support and assistance," White House spokesman Eric Schultz said.
File photo of a P3-Orion: AFP
Egyptian aviation minister Sherif Fathy addresses press. Photo: Khaled Desouki/AFP
Looks like yet another terrorist attack. Airplane departed from Paris. When will we get tough, smart and vigilant? Great hate and sickness!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 19, 2016
Sherif Fathy addresses journalists. Photo: Khaled Desouki/AFP
"I have no information that wreckage has been found for now," he said, adding that he could not even confirm whether the plane had crashed.
13:33 - Families of passengers are transported to a 'gathering point' at Cairo airport
The families comfort each other as they wait outside a services hall at the airport. Photo: Khaled Desouki/AFP
Photo: Khaled Desouki/AFP
EgyptAir transported the relatives by bus to a gathering point. Photo: Khaled Desouki/AFP
12:25 - Hollande confirms EgyptAir flight 'crashed'
French President Francois Hollande confirmed that the flight had "crashed", adding: "We will get the truth."
"It is out duty to find out and understand everything about the causes of what has happened. No hypothesis will be ruled out" he said, expressing his "solidarity" and "compassion" with the families of passengers.
Meanwhile, the Paris Prosecutor's department has opened an inquiry into the plane's disappearance, Le Figaro reported.
Experts explained that the chances of a mechanical malfunction on the flight were slim.
"A bomb placed on board at Roissy or in Cairo is always possible because it's difficult to make your airport 100 percent watertight, even in an airport with such tight surveillance as Roissy (Charles de Gaulle)," said aeronautics expert Gerard Feldzer.
Read more here.
File photo: Yusuke Kawasaki/Flickr
11:27 – EgyptAir's two Paris-Cairo flights will run today
The airline's two scheduled flights from Charles de Gaulle airport to Cairo will run as normal on Thursday, reported BFMTV. The flights are scheduled for 3:45pm and 10:45pm.
Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault has also arrived at the airport, where he will meet relatives of passengers who have gathered at the EgyptAir desk.
10:54 - Relatives "leaving the airport"
Some relatives of those on board the flight are leaving Cairo's airport, according to a BBC reporter on the scene. He said on Twitter that relatives had told him they were still awaiting an official update and that the mother of a stewardess on board said: "We know nothing".
10:30 - France and Egypt exchange "condolences"
French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault "expressed condolences over the plane incident involving the EgyptAir airplane that went down, and Shoukry in turn expressed condolences for the French casualties who were on board the plane," the Egyptian foreign ministry said.
The French Embassy in Cairo reported that Ayrault expressed France's solidarity with Egypt in this "terrible ordeal" and that both ministers "emphasized the importance of close co-ordination between the two countries in the assistance of the families, as well as in investigating the causes of the disappearance".
French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault has reportedly set up a "crisis cell" at Cairo's French Embassy.
Meanwhile, family members of those on board are gathering at Cairo's airport.
10:20 - MarineTraffic shows ships joining the search
Ship tracking website MarineTraffic has created a video showing vessels joining the search for the missing plane.
You can also follow the live map here, which shows more and more nearby ships joining, including Egyptian, French and international vessels.
10:16 - Airbus confirms disappearance
In a statement on their Facebook page, Airbus confirmed the disappearance of flight MS 804, saying the plane was "lost over the Mediterranean Sea" but not confirming reports that it had crashed. It said that the plane had accumulated around 48,000 flight hours.
"Airbus stands-by ready to provide full technical assistance to French Investigation Agency - BEA - and to the Authorities in charge of the investigation," continued the statement.
Like EgyptAir, Airbus has changed its cover photo on Facebook to a blank grey image, in apparent reference to the disappearance.
9:56 - Flight crashed off Greek island of Karpathos, says aviation source
An EgyptAir flight which disappeared from radar screens en route from Paris to Cairo early Thursday, "crashed" into the sea off the southern Greek island of Karpathos while in Egyptian airspace, a Greece aviation source told AFP.
"At around 0029 GMT (3:29 am) when it was in Egyptian airspace, the plane disappeared from Greek radars... it crashed around 130 nautical miles off the island of Karpathos" between Rhodes and Crete, the source told AFP.
The report is unconfirmed and EgyptAir continues to remind media to "abide" by its press releases, which have not yet confirmed where the plane disappeared. It said it denied all "misleading information" regarding the reasons for the disappearance, and confirmed that the reason has not been confirmed.
Press Release No 7— EGYPTAIR (@EGYPTAIR) May 19, 2016
EGYPTAIR denies all misleading information published by news websites and social media channels regarding the reasons
9:40 - Egypt army denies detecting distress signal from missing plane
The Egyptian army denied it detected any "distress messages" from an EgyptAir flight that vanished over the Mediterranean on Thursday, in a statement posted on its spokesman's Facebook page.
EgyptAir had said it was informed by the military that it detected a "distress message" from the Airbus A320 which was en route from Paris to Cairo when it disappeared from radar screens.
9:32 - Crisis meeting at the Elysee
Top ministers met at the Elysee Presidential palace in Paris for a crisis meeting about the Egypt Air flight and France's response.
French foreign minister Ayrault said: "Everything must be done to find the plane," adding that France was ready to send its "military means, planes and boats" to aid in the search.
French junior minister for Transport, Maritime Economy and Fishery Alain Vidalies and foreign minister Jean-Marc Ayrault speak to press. Photo: Stephane de Sakutin/AFP
9:16 - Who was on board the flight?
EgyptAir has confirmed that among the 56 passengers and 10 crew members, there were two babies and one child. The airline is hosting passengers' families near the Cairo airport and has provided doctors and translators.
Read more here.
Photo: Andy Buchanan/AFP
The flight sent a distress message before vanishing from radar screens, a message that was detected by the military, the airline said in a statement.
BREAKING: Egyptian aviation officials say an EgyptAir flight from Paris to Cairo with 66 passengers and crew on board has crashed.— The Associated Press (@AP) May 19, 2016
Further tweets in Arabic said contact was lost at 2:45 am Cairo time (0045 GMT), when the plane was just inside Egyptian airspace and at an altitude of 37,000 feet (11,000 metres).
An EGYPTAIR official declared that EGYPTAIR A320 aircraft in its flight number MS804 lost contact with radar above the Mediterranean Sea.— EGYPTAIR (@EGYPTAIR) May 19, 2016
There were 59 passengers and 10 crew aboard, according to the airline.
"EGYPTAIR has contacted the concerned authorities and bodies and inspection is underway through the rescue teams," another tweet in English said.
The flight from Paris Charles de Gaulle to Cairo normally takes just over four hours and the plane was due to arrive at 3:05 am local time.
The Flightradar24 website said MS804 is an Airbus A320-232, and was delivered to the airline in 2003.
EgyptAir hit the headlines in March when a flight from Alexandria to Cairo was hijacked and forced to divert to Cyprus, where the "unstable" hijacker demanded to see his ex-wife.
In October, the Isis group claimed responsibility for bombing a Russian airliner carrying holidaymakers from the Egyptian resort of Sharm El-Sheikh, killing all 224 people on board.
The disappearance of the jet on Thursday comes more than two years after the start of one of the most enduring mysteries in aviation history.
Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 vanished on March 8, 2014 en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 passengers and crew onboard, mostly Chinese and Malaysians.
Authorities believe the Boeing 777 detoured to the remote southern Indian Ocean and then plunged into the water.
The costly, painstaking search for a crash site has yet to yield results, but five pieces of debris have been identified as either definitely or probably from the jet, all found thousands of kilometres (miles) from the search zone, likely swept there by ocean currents.
Theories to explain the disappearance include a possible mechanical or structural failure, a hijacking or terror plot, or rogue pilot action.