• Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Swiss cops confirm Ethiopian plane hijack

BBC Online
The BBC's Imogen Foulkes says the situation is described as
The BBC's Imogen Foulkes says the situation is described as "under control". Photo: BBC

An Ethiopian Airlines plane en route from Addis Ababa to Rome has been forced to land in Geneva after being hijacked, Swiss police say.

One hijacker has been arrested. The airline said in a statement that all passengers and crew were safe.

There are no injuries, and the police say the situation is "under control".

Flight 702 was scheduled to leave Addis Ababa at 00:30 local time (21:30 GMT), and arrive in Rome at 04:40 local time. Geneva airport has now reopened.

Geneva airport said departures would resume at 08:15 (07:15 GMT) and arrivals at 08:45 (07:45 GMT).

Geneva police confirmed the plane had made an unscheduled landing in the Swiss city at 06:00.

The flight was hijacked as it was flying over Sudan, reports the Tribune de Geneve newspaper.

In a statement, Ethiopian Airlines said Flight 702 "on scheduled service departing from Addis Ababa at 00:30 (local time) scheduled to arrive in Rome at 04:40 (local time) was forced to proceed to Geneva airport".

"Accordingly, the flight has landed safely at Geneva airport. All passengers and crew are safe at Geneva airport," it added in the statement.

All 200 passengers and crew on board the plane were in good health, the company said,

Passengers came out of the aircraft at about 08:00 (local time) while surrounded by dozens of police, the Tribune de Geneve reports.

The reason for the hijacking remains unclear, although there are unconfirmed reports that at least some of those on board the aircraft may have been asking for asylum, reports the BBC's Imogen Foulkes in Geneva.

 

Published: 1:45 pm Monday, February 17, 2014

Last modified: 8:14 pm Monday, February 17, 2014

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