EgyptAir crash: Forensics chief dismisses reports of human remains pointing to onboard explosion

Egypt's head of forensics has denied reports that human remains retrieved from the Mediterranean Sea and examined by a team of experts point to an explosion taking place on board Flight 804, which crashed last week.

"Everything published about this matter is completely false, and [are] mere assumptions that did not come from the Forensics Authority," state news agency MENA quoted forensics head Hesham Abdelhamid as saying.

Earlier on Tuesday, an official who was said to have personally examined the remains at a Cairo morgue told AP on condition of anonymity that "the logical explanation is that it was an explosion."

The source went on to state that the experts had been given around 80 small body parts to investigate.

There isn't even a whole body part, like an arm or a head,” the official said.

"The size of the remains points towards an explosion, the biggest part was the size of a palm. Some of the remains started arriving on Sunday in about 23 bags," a forensics official told Reuters.

The official said that no traces of explosives have been found yet that would suggest that a bomb caused the plane to crash. The team is expecting more body parts to arrive soon so that they continue with their forensic examination in trying to find out what caused the crash.

Family members of the disaster victims turned up at the Cairo morgue to give DNA samples to help the forensics department identify the remains of those who passed away, AP reported.

The Airbus A320 crashed early on Thursday morning around 170km from the Egyptian coast in the Mediterranean Sea, having taken off from Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris.

The plane was carrying 66 people, which comprised 56 passengers and 10 crew members. Of the passengers, 30 were Egyptian, 15 French and two Iraqi, with one from each of Algeria, Belgium, Britain, Canada, Chad, Kuwait, Portugal, Saudi Arabia and Sudan.

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi said that authorities are working hard to find the plane’s black boxes. Cairo deployed a submarine over the weekend to search for wreckage from the plane.

He added that at this stage of the investigation “all scenarios” of plane crash “are possible.”

So please, it is very important that we do not talk and say there is a specific scenario,” Sisi said. “This could take a long time but no one can hide these things. As soon as the results are out, people will be informed.