Russian airliner returns to Moscow after apparent hijack attempt

Other News Materials 29 December 2006 13:12 (UTC +04:00)

(RIA Novosti) - A Russian passenger jet diverted from its course Thursday owing to an apparent highjack attempt has now touched down in Moscow, an airport official said Friday.

The A-321 Airbus airliner, operated by national carrier Aeroflot Airlines, was flying from Moscow to Geneva with 168 people onboard when it had to make an unscheduled landing at Prague's Ruzyne international airport after the pilot declared an emergency following an apparent attempt to hijack the plane, reports Trend.

The crew said the allegedly drunk 32-year-old hijacker, identified later as Yevgeny Dogayev, tried to break into the cockpit claiming that he had an explosive device on him and demanding that the crew change the plane's course and land in Egypt.

Aeroflot's air security service said the suspected hijacker had been subdued in a fight with stewards and passengers and handed down to police at the Prague airport, where the passengers spent about nine hours before the plane was authorized to leave for its original destination, Geneva.

The hijacker and eight family members accompanying him on the trip, including three children, were removed from the plane.

Aeroflot officials said Dogayev was presumably drunk and would undergo medical tests.