The Cypriot special forces are standing by and are preparing to raid the airplane. The Cypriot police have requested that all media and cameras leave the tarmac. Further details on the operations are not being made available for security reasons. The hijacker is still holding 7 hostages. According to newer developments the hijacker is making new demands, aprt from the letter to his ex-partner. The hijacker had forced the crew of filght MS181 of EgyptAir to land at Larnaka airport in Cyprus at 9 am on Tuesday morning. Simce then he has released all the passengers except the 7 and the plane’s crew. More specifically, the hijacker is still holding 3 crew members, a security officer and three passengers. The Cypriot police have cordoned off the whole area of Mackenzie around the Larnaka airport.
Conflicting information had emerged previously regarding the identity of the hijacker, but it has become apparent that his name is not Inrahim Samaha, as the real Samaha has spoken with BBC arabic services. According to our sources the real name of the hijacker is Seldim Eldim Mustafa, 51 and is employed in the Egyptian armed forces.
The moment the man hands the letter to Marina Paraschou
The developments in the ongoing hijacking situation of EgyptAir flight MS181 in Cyprus have taken an unbelievable turn. The man is called Ibrahim Samaha, a Libyan national by some accounts, an Egyptian-American by others and has requested to see a Cypriot woman by the name of Marina Paraschou, who is purportedly his ex-wife. According to Reuters Samaha is a veterinary professor at the university of Alexandria, Egypt. It has been reported by many media outlets that he did not have explosives with him, with released passengers saying that the saw him wielding something the looked like a gun. Cypriot authorities are taking the woman to the aiport to speak with the man. He has demamded to give a 4-page letter to the woman. All passengers, except 4 foreigners and the crew have been releaseed. Commenting on the developments, Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiadis said women can cause plane hijacking, while Egyptian authorities said he is not a terrorist, but an idiot.
Hijacker Ibrahim Smaha
Moment passengers are freed
A source says the hijacker has requested political asylum, although this has not been confirmed from a second source yet. According to Egyptian media, there are 10 US citizens and 8 British citizens on board.
Egyptian women and children are being released, while according to Reuters and the French media the hijacker is starpped with explosives. The hijacker is a Libyan national, according to the latest information, while the Egyptian security forces say he cannot be carrying explosives.
According to the latest information, there is one hijacker while the passengers on board are finally 55 not 81. Cypriot authorities are currently in negotiations with the hijacker, who is willing to release Egyptian women and children. ‘Egypt Air’ company has confirmed the hijacking, while Cypriot police have not confirmed the reported hijacker’s willingness to release women and children. The hijacker had reportedly strapped a bomb to his body and threatened the pilot forcing him to land the plane.
A passenger airplane ‘Egypt Air’ MS 181 has been hijacked and landed in Cyprus Tuesday morning at 8.46. The Airbus 320 airplane belongs to the fleet of ‘Egypt Air’ and is carrying 81 passengers. The Cypriot public order ministry is in an emergency meeting to examine all aspects of the situation. The plane was on a domestic Alexandria-Cairo flight and requested permission for an emergency landing at the Larnaka airport in Cyprus. Cypriot authorities told ‘Proto Thema’ that information is unclear whether there are hijackers on board or there is an explosive mechanism on the plane.