French soldiers stand guard at the crash site of Air Algerie flight AH5017 near the northern Mali town of Gossi July 24, 2014..
(photo credit: REUTERS)
An Air Algerie flight that crashed in Mali on Thursday reportedly had on board a Hezbollah leader, 33 French military personnel and three senior intelligence officers, according to a report in an Algerian newspaper.
Initial evidence taken from the remote crash site indicates that the aircraft broke apart when it smashed to the ground early on Thursday morning, making an attack appear unlikely.
The Algerian newspaper Echrouk reported on Saturday that the senior Hezbollah official was disguised as a businessman and traveled from and to Senegal and Burkina Faso.
The Lebanese embassy in Algiers inquired about its nationals that were on the flight and it was discovered that the Hezbollah official was killed.
The French military personnel were stationed in Mali and elsewhere in Africa, said the report.