The cockpit voice recorder from doomed EgyptAir Flight 804 was at least partially recovered from the Mediterranean Sea, Egypt’s investigation committee said Thursday, giving rise to hope that mysteries surrounding the crash could soon be solved.

The black box was damaged and had to be carefully retrieved in stages by a salvage ship with robotic search devices, the committee said in a statement. The ship “was able to salvage the part that contains the memory unit, which is considered the most important part of the recording device,” the statement said.

There was no immediate word on the fate of the data recorder. Searchers spotted the plane’s wreckage Wednesday, almost one month after the Cairo-bound Airbus A320 plunged into the sea more than three hours into a flight from Paris. All 66 people aboard perished.

The voice recorder was being taken by ship to the Egyptian city of Alexandria, where specialists hope to reveal and analyze the box’s contents.

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