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Official: Passenger tried to divert plane to Sochi

3:21 PM, Feb 7, 2014   |    comments
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(USA TODAY) - A Turkish commercial airliner was reportedly hijacked Friday by a passenger who claimed to have a bomb and who tried to divert the plane to Sochi, Russia, where the Winter Olympics are starting, Zaman Turkish newspaper reported.

A flight for Pegasus airline en route from Kharkiv in Ukraine to Istanbul was forced to land by a Turkey military jet at Istanbul's Sabiha Gokce airport with 110 passengers aboard, according to the report.

Habib Soluk, the Transport Ministry undersecretary, told private NTV television that the plane landed safely. He says authorities are trying to convince the passenger to give himself up.

Soluk said the flight crew sent a signal indicating it was being hijacked and the plane was forced to land by an F-16 military jet.

However, Turkish Samanyolu Haber news channel reported that the hijacker was "neutralized" and apprehended and the evacuation of passengers is expected soon. It said the hijacker was a Ukrainian national and was being interrogated by airport police.


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