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Libyan Plane Hijackers Have Surrendered

The two hijackers onboard a hijacked Libyan plane have surrendered. Hijackers claiming to have a grenade took over a Libyan plane Friday and diverted it to Malta before releasing everyone onboard and surrendering to authorities.

Security officials say they have been searched and no passengers were harmed. The plane had been diverted to Malta with the men claiming to have hand-grenades.

Libyan Foreign Minister Taher Siala said the two hijackers were supporters of slain dictator Moamer Kadhafi and had requested political asylum in Malta. Gaddafi was toppled and killed in an uprising in 2011. Siala, from Libya's internationally backed Government of National Accord, said the hijackers have also said they want to set up a pro-Kadhafi political party.  The plane landed at 11:32 am (1032 GMT) in Malta.

After more than an hour on the tarmac, the door of the Airbus A320 opened and a first group of women and children were seen descending a mobile staircase. A Libyan lawmaker, who spoke to one of the passengers, says the hijackers demanded the creation of a pro-Gaddafi party.

There were more than 100 passengers and crew on board.

 

Africa Team

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