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It is 'not known if hijackers suicide belt is real'

It is not known if the suicide belt is real but the hijack situation is being dealt with as if it is, the civil aviation minister told a press conference.

Negotiations are on-going and seven are still on board.

The hijacker had not made any concrete demands so far, said Sherif Fathy, who declined to give the nationalities of the passengers still on the plane.

He declined to identify the hijacker.


Egyptair hijacking 'is not terrorism'

An EgyptAir plane that was hijacked this morning and forced to land in Cyprus was not related to "terrorism".

The Mediterranean country's President Nicos Anastasiades confirmed the diverted flight, which was travelling between Burg El Arab and Cairo, was not being treated as terrorism.

Earlier reports suggested the man wanted to get in touch with his estrange Cypriot wife.

Airport official seen boarding hijacked Egyptair plane

While the bulk of the passengers were released from the hijacked aircraft at Lanarca Airport, an airport official was earlier seen boarding the A320 Airbus.

It was unclear if the official boarded the aircraft before or after the dozens of passengers were freed to board waiting buses.

An official boards the hijacked Egyptair A320 Airbus at Larnaca Airport. Credit: Reuters
The official was photographed entering the plane from beyond the airfield fencing. Credit: Reuters
The hijacked flight 181 grounded in Cyprus after being bound for the Egyptian capital Cairo from Alexandria. Credit: Reuters

Emergency call line set up for hijacked plane information

EgyptAir have set up an emergency phone line after one of its planes was hijacked.

All passengers have been released except for four foreign nationals and the crew, the airline says.


More people seen leaving hijacked EgyptAir plane

More people have been seen leaving the hijacked EgyptAir flight which was forced to land in Cyprus.

A handful of people were seen disembarking the hijacked plane at Lanarca Airport, though it was unclear if they were crew members or passengers. Credit: RTV
The group boarded an airport bus before being driven away from the aircraft. Credit: RTV

Passengers seen disembarking hijacked Egyptair plane

Passengers have been seen disembarking the hijacked Egyptair plane with their hand luggage to board a transfer bus.

Four foreign nationals and the seven crew members are understood to still be on board the plane at Lanarca Airport in Cyprus.

The plane landed at Larnaca airport at around 7.50am local time before the vast majority of passengers were released. Credit: RTV
Passengers were seen boarding the waiting buses with their luggage. Credit: RTV

FCO are in contact with Cypriot and Egyptian authorities

The Foreign Office is in contact with the authorities on the ground after the hijacked EgyptAir plane landed in Cyprus.

They are trying to establish if British nationals are among the passengers.

Eight Britons are believed to be on board, according to security sources.

We are in contact with the Cypriot and Egyptian authorities after a hijacked plane landed in Cyprus.

– Foreign Office
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