Two arrested after UK fighter jet scrambles to intercept Pakistani airliner
A U.K. military fighter jet was dispatched to escort a Pakistani passenger jetliner flying from Pakistan to England on Friday. According to the Associated Press, Britain’s Minister of Defense confirmed that a military plane was launched in connection with an incident on a civilian aircraft, but would say nothing more.
Pakistan International Airlines spokesperson Mashood Tajwar told reporters that ground crews had been unable to contact the pilot and crew of Flight P709 to Manchester after repeated attempts.
Authorities diverted the flight to Britain’s Stansted Airport in Essex, outside London. Mark Davis, spokesperson for the airport reported that the plane landed safely.
Essex Police said that two men were arrested and are now in custody. The plane was carrying approximately 300 passengers on a flight from Lahore, Pakistan to Manchester, England.
Watch this video, broadcast by the Associated Press on May 24.
[image of Pakistan International Airlines jet via Dean Morley’s Flickr photostream, Creative Commons licensed]