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Hijacked Plane Lands in Matla: 118 Passengers Released

Veteran News
Veteran News
December 23, 2016
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A plane taking off from Libya was hijacked during flight and diverted to Malta early this morning. After landing, it was reported that either one or two hijackers were threatening to blow up the plane. It is still unclear what the intentions behind the hijack are.Local authorities have reported that 109 of the 118 passengers aboard the flight have been safely evacuated. The Associated Press reported that "Buses were driven onto the tarmac to carry passengers away. Television footage showed no signs of struggle or alarm."There may still be staff and passengers aboard the flight.


Reuters described the situation earlier this morning:

"A senior Libyan security official told Reuters that when the plane was still in flight on Friday morning the pilot told the control tower at Tripoli's Mitiga airport it had been hijacked." 'The pilot reported to the control tower in Tripoli that they were being hijacked, then they lost communication with him,' the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity." 'The pilot tried very hard to have them land at the correct destination but they refused.' "

The Times of Malta reported that the hijacker(s) claimed to be armed with a hand grenade when they took over the flight. Security forces are currently working to diffuse the situation, and all flights to Malta's airport have been diverted for the time being. Investigations are also ongoing to determine how any explosives were smuggled on board the flight.[caption id="attachment_9464" align="aligncenter" width="624"]


Reuters[/caption]Malta is an island nation 200 miles north of Tripoli. It should be noted that flights from Libya were banned from landing in the European Union two years ago, citing security concerns for passengers.Libya is also a nation plagued by violence since 2011. Factions have been fighting there for some time, and the airport in Tripoli has also been attacked by militias, resulting in the destruction of several planes.

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