German prosecutors have disclosed that the first officer of the crashed Germanwings Airbus A320 had previously been treated for suicidal tendencies.
The Dusseldorf public prosecutor’s office states that the treatment took place over an “extended period”, several years ago, before the pilot obtained his flight qualifications.
It adds that he had undertaken further visits, more recently, to medical specialists in neurology and psychiatry – in association with periods of sick leave – but there is no recorded evidence of aggression or suicidal behaviour.
Investigators are still trying to understand the apparent deliberate action by the first officer which put the A320 on a fatal collision course with high terrain in the French Alps on 24 March.
The office notes that no personal or family circumstances have been uncovered which might point convincingly to a possible motive.
It stresses that it is not prepared to engage in speculation. “The investigating authorities have to stick to facts alone,” it adds.