Two men arrested after RAF Typhoon jet is scrambled to escort Lahore passenger flight plane to London Stansted Airport
According to one of the passengers, the aircraft's cabin crew said two men had repeatedly tried to get into the cockpit
Two men were arrested on suspicion of endangering an aircraft after a passenger aircraft was escorted through British airspace by fighter jets and redirected to land at Stansted airport in Essex.
The two British men, aged 30 and 41, were held after RAF Typhoon jets were scrambled from RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire. to escort the aircraft, which had been travelling from Pakistan to Manchester.
Mashood Takwar, a spokesman for Pakistan International Airlines, said air traffic controllers in Manchester contacted the pilot 25 minutes before the aircraft was due to land, after receiving information from British security services.
The RAF jets were scrambled about 10 minutes before the Boeing 777, which departed from Lahore, with 297 passengers aboard, had been due to land in Manchester at 2pm.
Police boarded Pakistan International Airlines flight PK709 once it had landed at Stansted and removed the men amid reports of an on-board fight.
It is believed that a passenger allegedly threatened to blow up the aircraft after other passengers tried to intervene in a row he was involved in.
Murtaza Ali Shah, a journalist, said he had spoken to a friend on board the plane, Fakhir Iqbal, a political activist, who was sitting behind the man who made the threat.
Mr Shah said his friend told him: "Two guys started a row with a girl and lots of other people.
"Some people tried to calm them and asked them not to be rowdy and abusive.
"Fakhir told them to calm down.
"They said, 'Don't bloody speak to us or we will blow up the plane'.
"The crew came and spoke to them and they were openly threatening the staff.
"Fakhir went to other crew members and told them they were making threats."
Umari Nauman told Sky News: "The cabin crew informed us that basically they tried to come into the cockpit a few times and because they had been asked not to do that they got into a bit of an argument with the crew and made a few threats."
Passengers were ordered to leave their possessions on board before leaving the aircraft, which was directed to an isolated stand where it was being forensically examined by specialist officers.
No suspicious objects had been found and the incident was not thought to be terrorism-related.
- 2 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 3 Sofyen Belamouadden murder: The inside story of a crime that horrified Britain
- 4 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 5 UK weather: Britain braced for snow to replace sun as arctic air mass moves in
Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
Russian hack of President Obama's emails worse than previously admitted
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
UK weather: Britain braced for snow to replace sun as arctic air mass moves in
Nepal earthquake: US Pastor Tony Miano sparks outcry by suggesting Nepalis should convert and not rebuild their 'pagan shrines'
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
£18750 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Hotel in Chadderton is a popular ch...
£32969 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is going through a period o...
£35000 - £55000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Data Engineer is required to ...
Competitive Salary & Benefits: MBDA UK Ltd: Role Title and Location: Facilitie...