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Co-pilot hijacks Ethiopian Airlines plane to Geneva to seek asylum

Published on Feb 17, 2014 4:28 PM
Police evacuate passengers, on Feb 17, 2014, from the Ethiopian Airlines flight en route to Rome, which was on hijacked and forced to land in Geneva, where the hijacker has been arrested, police said. The man who hijacked an Ethiopian Airlines flight en route to Rome on Monday was the co-pilot, according to the Geneva airport where the plane was forced to land. -- PHOTO: AFP

GENEVA (AFP) - The co-pilot of an Ethiopian Airlines flight hijacked his aircraft on Monday while the captain was in the bathroom and forced it to land in Geneva so that he could seek asylum, police said. 

The man was arrested after scaling out of the cockpit window on a rope, according to Geneva police spokesman Eric Grandjean.

The co-pilot said he seized his chance to take over flight ET-702 from Addis Ababa to Rome by locking himself in the cockpit when the pilot went to the bathroom, Mr Grandjean told AFP.

Identified as an Ethiopian citizen born in 1983, the man told police “he felt threatened in his country and wants to seek asylum in Switzerland,” he added.

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