UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond has confirmed that at least three Britons were on board the Germanwings flight which crashed in the French Alps on Tuesday. He said that he couldn't rule out the possibility that there could be further British nationals involved.

The Germanwings flight 4U9525 crashed on Tuesday morning in the French Alps. It was heading to Dusseldorf in Germany when it came down just before 10.00am UTC. It had left Barcelona airport in Spain just over one hour before. There were 144 passengers, mostly German and Spanish travellers, and 6 crew members on board.

The Foreign Secretary said that the Foreign and Commonwealth Office has been in contact with family members of those involved in the fatal crash.

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He said: "We are in contact with the families of those known to have been killed, we're also in contact with the French, German and Spanish authorities and once we have a clearer picture we'll make a further announcement."

The British Ambassador to France tweeted to say he would be travelling to the crash site to honour the victims. Peter Ricketts said: "I will arrive shortly with President Hollande near the crash site to honour the British an other victims of this awful disaster."

French President Francois Hollande travelled to the site of the crash in the Alps, where he was joined by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Spain's Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy. Germanwings said on Wednesday that 75 of the passengers were German and 35 were Spanish, down from 45 which was initially reported following the crash.

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A number of other nationalities are also thought to have been on board. Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop confirmed that two Australian nationals had been killed. She tweeted to say that she had spoken with her Spanish and German counterparts to offer her "condolences on [the] tragic loss."

Investigators are now examining the black box recorders which have been recovered, although one of the boxes is said to be badly damaged. No distress call was made during the eight minute period when the flight began to descend from the skies.