Sunday, June 11, 2017

Three Arrested After Plane to London Diverted in Germany: Police interrogate men after flight from Ljubljana, Slovenia, makes sudden landing in Cologne




The Wall Street Journal
By Zeke Turner
June 10, 2017 8:15 p.m. ET


BERLIN—An easyJet PLC plane traveling to London Stansted Airport from Ljubljana, Slovenia, on Saturday night diverted and made a sudden landing in Cologne, Germany, amid suspicions three men on board posed a threat to the aircraft, German police said.

The three men were arrested and being interrogated at police headquarters early Sunday morning, according to a spokesman for the state police in North Rhine-Westphalia. The men were being investigated “on the suspicion of preparing a serious antistate act of violence,” the state prosecutor and police said in a joint statement.

The men had yet to be charged and the investigation was ongoing, the police spokesman said.

According to the local prosecutor and police in Cologne, passengers on board alerted the flight crew that the men were “talking about terrorist content.”

The plane’s captain decided to land as a precaution, said Carinne Heinen, a spokeswoman for easyJet.

After landing in Cologne, the 151 passengers on board the Airbus A319 plane evacuated by emergency slides, the Cologne Bonn Airport said in a statement. EasyJet said they were given access to a hotel and refreshments. According to the airport, six planes were redirected Saturday because of the incident.

After the landing, police destroyed a backpack belonging to one of the men in a controlled explosion.

“We realized that it was not dangerous after we exploded it” said the police spokesman. The Cologne airport said later that it had resumed normal operation, and easyJet said the flight would continue to London on Sunday morning.

Original article can be found here:  https://www.wsj.com

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