TEHRAN, Aug. 18 (MNA) – Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Mohammad-Ali Hosseini condemned on Saturday the Turkish plane hijacking.

On Saturday, two men hijacked a Turkish passenger plane, which was bringing 136 passengers and six crew members from Northern Cyprus's Ercan airport to Istanbul. The hijackers held several people hostage for more than four hours before surrendering to the Turkish authorities, officials said.

 

It was initially announced that the hijackers demanded the plane be diverted to Tehran; however, Hosseini stated that none of the relevant officials had received such request, and even if they received, Iran would not have given the permission the plane to land in Tehran.

 

Turkey's interior ministry said one of the hijackers was a Turkish national and the other had a Syrian passport. Their motives are not yet known.

 

Earlier, Northern Cyprus officials said the two men were Iranian nationals protesting against actions of the United States.

 

The hijackers announced after the plane landed that women and children could leave, BBC reported.

 

But when the emergency exits were opened almost everyone rushed out. 

 

Many leapt from the wing of the plane to safety. The two pilots also jumped from the cockpit on the tarmac

 

The hijackers are being questioned by interior ministry officials.

 

Passengers spoke of their panic as the hijack began, when, they said, the pilot appeared for a moment to lose control of the plane.

 

MS/GJ

END

MNA

 

 

News Code 24585

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