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Plane hijack weapons were fakes, Malta PM says

  • Video report by ITV News Correspondent Rebecca Barry

It has emerged that the two pistols and hand grenade used in the plane hijack were fake, the prime minister said.

The hijackers have been arrested after they forced a passenger jet to land in Malta.

The hijackers initially held more than a hundred passengers hostage but they and the crew were eventually released unharmed.

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Moment plane hijackers surrendered caught on camera

This is the moment the plane hijackers surrendered to security forces in Malta.

The two men, believed to be Libyan, have been taken into custody after an internal Libyan flight diverted and landed in Malta.

The plane is still being searched and passengers questioned.

The men surrender with their hands in the air Credit: Reuters
The men were taken into custody Credit: Reuters
The men were cuffed and led away Credit: Reuters

Two pistols and grenade found on hijacked plane

The hijacked plane Credit: APTN

Two pistols and a hand grenade were found on the hijacked plane, the Maltese prime minister said.

After the plane landed, hijackers were told they should release all passengers before negotiations could begin, he said.

They released the passengers but detained several crew members and asked for negotiators to board the plane, but their plea was rejected.

They later agreed to release the crew and surrender, he said.

When the hijackers surrendered they gave up a hand grenade and a pistol, and another pistol was later found during a search of the plane, he added.

Crew and hijackers are all being questioned and a full search of the aircraft is ongoing.

Hijackers of Afriqiyah Airways plane named

Security officers leaving the plane Credit: PA

The hijackers of Afriqiyah Airways plane which was forced to land in Malta have been named as Suhah Mussa and Ahmed Ali, the pilot told a Libyan Channel TV network

The pilot said they were Libyans in their twenties.

The pilot said the men were seeking political asylum in Europe and wanted to set up a political party called "the New Fateh."

Fateh is a reference to former Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi, who led Fateh revolution after his coup in 1969.

Hijackers taken off plane in Malta

An unidentified man stands with his hands in the air next to the plane. Credit: RTV

The hijackers of the internal Libyan flight which diverted and landed in Malta have been taken off the plane in handcuffs, the Maltese prime minister has said.

"Hijackers surrendered, searched and taken into custody", Joseph Muscat tweeted.

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The hijackers were led away by Maltese soldiers.

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Plane hijackers 'demanded creation of pro-Gaddafi party'

The Afriqiyah flight was travelling from Sabha to Tripoli. Credit: AP

The men who hijacked a Libyan plane demanded the creation of a pro-Gaddafi party, according to one Libyan MP who spoke to a passenger.

Former Libyan leader Colonel Gaddafi was killed in an uprising in 2011, and the country has been racked by factional violence since.

Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said there are potentially only the two hijackers and some crew members still on board the plane.

Some of the crew 'still on board hijacked plane'

All of the passengers have left the plane Credit: APTN

Some of the crew members are still on board the hijacked plane, the Maltese prime minister has said.

He said minutes before that the crew members were being released.

Two hijackers on plane 'have grenades'

The bus waits to take away released passengers Credit: APTN

The two hijackers on board the Libyan plane in Malta have grenades, said a Libyan MP who spoke to a passenger.

MP Hadi al-Saghir added it was not clear what their demands were.

Mr al-Saghir said that Abdusalem Mrabit, a fellow member of Libya's House of Representatives, had told him that the two hijackers were in their mid 20s and were from the Tebu, an ethnic group present in southern Libya from where the plane departed.

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