Grenade, two pistols on hijacked Libyan plane

2016-12-23 20:27
Two hijackers diverted a Libyan commercial plane to Malta on Friday and threatened to blow it up with hand grenades, Maltese authorities and state media said. (Jonathan Borg, AP)

Two hijackers diverted a Libyan commercial plane to Malta on Friday and threatened to blow it up with hand grenades, Maltese authorities and state media said. (Jonathan Borg, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Valletta - Two men who hijacked a Libyan plane and forced it to land in Malta on Friday had a grenade and a handgun, and a second gun was found in a search of the aircraft, Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said.

"They were found to be in possession of a hand grenade and a pistol" when asked to surrender their weapons, Muscat told reporters after the two who took over the Afriqiyah Airways flight were arrested.

"The armed forces of Malta are conducting a full search of the aircraft and a second pistol has been found so far," he said.

Muscat outlined negotiations between the Maltese military and the hijackers after he said the plane landed in Malta at 11:34 (10:32 GMT) with 117 people on board, including six crew members.

Officials had initially said there were seven crew.

"Upon landing in Malta at 11:34 CET, contact started with the captain of the aircraft and the two hijackers - both male and probably of Libyan nationality.

"The hijackers were told that in order for any discussions to be entertained they should release all passengers first," Muscat said.

"This request was negotiated and eventually accepted and passengers were released in consecutive groups.

"Two crew members were also released while another four were detained for a period of time," he added.

Following further negotiations "the hijackers agreed to free the remaining members of the crew and to surrender," he continued.

Muscat said the hijackers had made no claim for political asylum, even though Libyan Foreign Minister Taher Siala said that was what they were seeking.

Read more on:    libya  |  malta  |  air travel

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.