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U.S. officials believe ISIS planted bomb on Russian plane

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Credit: Russian Emergency Situations Ministry Metrojet A321 fuselage fragment

The latest U.S. intelligence suggests that the crash of a Russian passenger jet in the Sinai over the weekend was most likely caused by a bomb on the plane planted by ISIS or an ISIS affiliate, according to a U.S. official familiar with the matter.

But the official stressed a formal conclusion has not been reached by the U.S. intelligence community.

“There is a definite feeling it was an explosive device planted in luggage or somewhere on the plane,” the official, who is familiar with the latest U.S. intelligence analysis of the crash, told CNN.

Metrojet Flight 9268 crashed Saturday after breaking apart in mid-air, killing all 224 people on board.

Other U.S. officials also told CNN that the analysis is pointing toward the cause being a bomb.

Based on the same intelligence, the U.S. belief is that ISIS or an ISIS-affiliated group is responsible for the attack, the official said.

The British government announced Wednesday that it had “become concerned that the plane may well have been brought down by an explosive device.”

The British government did not detail precisely how it reached that conclusion. But a UK aviation team is traveling to inspect the Sharm airport to look at whether there were proper security measures at the airport and the various scenarios, by which, an explosive device could have made it to the Russian airliner “including a person or in cargo,” according to the British transport minister.