Heavy rain reported in area where Air Algerie plane disappeared

File photo
Published: .
Updated: .

A Burkina Faso official says the wreckage of the Air Algerie plane that went missing has been found in Mali.

Gen. Gilbert Diendere says the wreckage was located about 50 kilometers (31 miles) from the border of Burkina Faso near the village of Boulikessi in Mali.

Diendere is a close aide to President Blaise Compaore and head of the crisis committee set up to coordinate research for the plane that vanished Thursday in a rainstorm over northern Mali.

He says searchers found human remains and burned and scattered plane wreckage.

Officials say heavy rain has been reported in the area where the plane carrying 116 people disappeared from radar today over the African country of Mali.

The Air Algerie flight was on its way from neighboring Burkina Faso to Algeria.

France's transport minister says the crew's last message asked air control to change the plane's route because of the heavy rains in the area.

Air Algerie has launched its security plan.

The plane was being operated by the Spanish airline Swiftair. Burkina Faso's transport minister says 50 French nationals were among those on board.

The plane had been missing for hours before the news was made public.

Mali is between Burkina Faso and Algeria. Unrest has plagued the northern part of Mali in recent years. But a senior French official says it seems unlikely that fighters in Mali would have the kind of weapons that could shoot down a plane.

The MD-83 plane was traveling from the Burkina Faso capital of Ouagadougou to Algiers, the Algerian capital.

About half of the passengers were French.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)