Hijacked plane forced to land at Geneva airport
Co-pilot arrested after hijacked Ethiopian Airlines plane landed in Geneva with just 20 minutes of fuel left
AN Ethiopian Airlines aircraft travelling from Addis Ababa to Rome has been hijacked and forced to land in Geneva, Swiss authorities say.
No injuries were reported and the suspected hijacker has been arrested, the BBC reports. Swiss police say that the situation is now under control.
Swiss police have detained the flight's co-pilot, according to The Guardian. Police say that he took control of the plane when the pilot went to the toilet, then landed the plane in Geneva and attempted to leave through the window on a rope.
The Boeing 767 took off from Addis Ababa at 0.30am local time (9.30pm GMT) and was due to land in Rome six hours later. After circling several times in Swiss airspace, the plane landed in Geneva airport. The airport was temporarily closed, but reopened just after 8am.
Flight ET702 had just 20 minutes of fuel left when it landed, Sky News reported.
Ethiopian Airlines confirmed the unscheduled stop in a statement on their website. The airline promised that it was making immediate arrangements "to fly its esteemed customers on-board the flight to their intended destinations".
In an audio recording between the aircraft and air traffic control posted on Twitter, a demand for asylum could be heard, the Guardian reported. But it wasn't clear whether it was the pilot or hijacker speaking.
The Ethiopian Airlines statement confirmed that no one has been injured in the hijack. "The flight has landed safely at Geneva airport. All passengers and crew are safe at Geneva airport," the airline said.