CAIRO Investigators have pieced together the remains of a Russian plane that crashed in October over Sinai and established the point at which its disintegration likely began, the Egyptian-led investigative committee said on Thursday.
Islamic State said it brought down the plane with a bomb smuggled inside a fizzy drink can. Russia and Western governments said a bomb destroyed the plane and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said the cause was terrorism; but investigators have yet to confirm this.
Reassembling the wreckage would help clarify the Islamic State account of events and how any explosives might have been secreted aboard.
The Airbus A321, operated by Metrojet, had been returning Russian holidaymakers from the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm al-Sheikh to St Petersburg when it broke up over Sinai, killing all 224 on board.
"The committee has concluded that a specific part is the one most likely to have been situated where the plane began to come apart," a committee statement said.
(Reporting by Ahmed Aboulenein; editing by Ralph Boulton)