Flight AH5017, en route from Ouagadougou to Algiers, crashed on July 24, 2014 in Mali with 118 people on board, including 54 French nationals. The aircraft, owned by Swiftair S.A. headquartered in Madrid, was chartered by Air Algeria.

Four emergency meetings were held over five days at the Élysée, a workcell of fifty people was set up in Paris, French flags were flown at half mast for three days, and an official trip by President François Hollande to Réunion and Mayotte was canceled.

A minister and a hundred soldiers were immediately dispatched to the spot.

According to the Algerian daily Echorouk, 33 French soldiers and three senior French Intelligence officers were among the victims. While the international press has relayed and commented on this information, the French press has withheld it form its readers.

France is engaged in several military operations in Africa.

The aircraft is supposed to have plummeted from an altitude of 10,000 meters to the ground in just 3 minutes. The French Bureau of Enquiry and Analysis for Civil Aviation Safety (BEA) is working on the assumption that it was an accident caused by a storm without, however, discarding the possibility of an attack.

Air France has decided to reroute its flights travelling through this area until further notice.

Echorouk also points out that a Lebanese victim, travelling under a false identity, was allegedly one of the major sponsors of Hezbollah. On 25 January 2010, several other senior Hezbollah officials died in the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 409.

The French investigation officially concluded that it was an accident, whereas the Lebanese resistance movement considers it to be an attack perpetrated by the Mossad.