‘Drunk passenger’ attempts to hijack Aeroflot plane and demands flight to Afghanistan

A drunk passenger who tried to hijack a passenger jet over Russia has been arrested, police have said.

The man had been on an Aeroflot flight from the Siberian city of Surgut to the Russian capital Moscow when he tried to break into the cockpit.

He told the crew that he was armed and demanded the plane divert to Afghanistan, according to Russian news agencies.

The plane made an emergency landing in the city of Khanty-Mansiysk, about 185 miles (298km) west of Surgut.

After landing, the plane stood on the runway for more than an hour, as the airport was evacuated.

State television channel Rossiya-24 showed footage of masked security officers leading the man on to the tarmac with his hands behind his back.

It later turned out that he had no weapons.

In a statement, Aeroflot said: “The passengers and crew members on board the aircraft disembarked safely and without injury.”

Investigators said the man was a Surgut resident with a previous conviction for property damage.

He will be charged with hijacking, a crime that carries a jail sentence of between seven and 12 years.

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