Plane from Ukraine Grounded in Istanbul After Bomb Threat

By: NBC Email
By: NBC Email

ANKARA, Turkey (WEAU) -- NBC News is reporting Turkish security officials searched a passenger plane at an Istanbul airport after a bomb threat was made and a passenger demanded to fly to Sochi, Russia, where the Winter Olympics got underway Friday.

The Pegasus Airline flight with 110 passengers from Kharkov, Ukraine, landed safely at Istanbul’s Sabiha Gokcen airport.

A Ukrainian sitting in seat 2F said he had a bomb on him and demanded that the fight be diverted to Sochi, Hasip Soluk Habertük, the Turkish Undersecretary of Transportation told reporters.

The crew told him, “Yes, we are directing the flight to Sochi,” according to the transportation official. But then the pilots turned off the in-flight monitors and flew to Istanbul.

Once plane entered Turkish airspace, the plane was escorted by two Turkish F-16s.

The plane is in a secure area at Istanbul's airport. Passengers and crew are still inside plane.

Turkish special forces seized the suspect who made the bomb threat and tried to hijack the plane, Turkish media reported.

The Winter Olympics kicked off with the opening ceremony Friday.

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