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Seven people stay on board hijacked Egyptian plane — aviation minister

March 29, 12:34 UTC+3 CAIRO
According to Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, the hijacking of the EgyptAir plane is not a terrorist attack
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© EPA/KATIA CHRISTODOULOU

CAIRO, March 29. /TASS/. Seven people, including three passengers, remain on board the hijacked EgyptAir plane, Egypt’s Civil Aviation Minister Sherif Fathy told reporters on Tuesday.

The EgyptAir domestic flight from Alexandria to Cairo was hijacked on Tuesday morning. The airline said there were 81 people onboard the plane. The jet landed at Larnaca Airport, Cyprus, at around 6 a.m. GMT. Media reports suggested that personal motives could be behind the incident and the hijacker requested political asylum in Cyprus.

Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades said the hijacking of the EgyptAir plane is not a terrorist attack.

Media reports earlier said that the hijacker had an explosives belt. The information has not been confirmed. According to the CBC TV channel, there are no explosives on board.

Police forces with canine unit are currently searching the airport. Reinforced police cordons were set up at the airport building and around it.

The airport is currently closed for all incoming and outbound flights. The airport’s administration told TASS that the session of emergency services is underway but refused to provide further details.

Egypt’s General Prosecutor’s Office has already launched an investigation into the hijacking of the plane.

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