RealNews

Hijacker of Turkish Jet Surrenders

3-Hour Standoff Ends in Athens as 200 Aboard Are Freed. A Turkish Airlines airliner carrying more than 200 people from Istanbul to Ankara was hijacked Friday night and forced to land in Athens, authorities said. After a tense, three-hour standoff with Greek security forces, a lone hijacker surrendered and released the passengers. The suspect was a man in his early twenties who appeared to be upset about family problems and had no known links to terrorist groups, according to officials. He took over the plane by saying he had explosives, and demanded that it be refueled in Athens and flown to Berlin. Several Turkish legislators and government officials were aboard the flight, a regular shuttle between Turkey’s largest city, Istanbul, and the capital. One lawmaker said the hijacker spoke by mobile phone with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan during negotiations on the runway of Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport and that this helped break the impasse. “There’s no clear information on what kind of weapon is involved,” said Binali Yildirim, the Turkish transportation minister. “All we have are reports that he made threats such as, ‘I’ll blow it up if you get in my way.’ ” Full Story

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