Man uses pen to hold Air China flight attendant hostage

Nellie Chapman
April 15, 2018

A mentally ill passenger today tried to hold a flight attendant hostage using a fountain pen as a weapon, forcing an Air China flight bound for Beijing to make an unscheduled landing.

The flight had taken off at 8:40 am from the city of Changsha in Hunan province and was scheduled to land in Beijing at 11 am. The statement further reveals that the flight crew and passengers all were unharmed.

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According to the aviation authorities, by 13.17 local time the situation was settled.

"The incident was successfully dealt with at 1:17 p.m. and passengers and crew members are safe", the CAAC said.

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But the less than two-and-half-hour journey turned longer as it made an unusual landing at Zhengzhou in Henan province in just over an hour of flight, as per a post made on Air China's official Weibo microblog, the Chinese equivalent to Twitter. Media reports suggest that the authorities refused to provide any further information and it is still unclear that if the interference referred to any possible hijacking attempt.

Police in Zhengzhou said in a statement that the alleged hostage-taker has a history of mental illness and experienced an unspecified "sudden" psychological disorder when he grabbed the flight attendant.

Authorities at Zhengzhou airport said it immediately activated emergency measures and that the airport was operational.

She looked out the window and saw many police cars, ambulances and fire engines parked outside the plane as it was landing in Zhengzhou, the newspaper said on Weibo.

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