Libyan plane hijackers to appear before Maltese court

Valletta, Dec 25 (IANS) The two hijackers who diverted an internal Libyan flight to an airport are set to appear before a court in Malta on December 25, police source said on Saturday.

Maltese Police Commissioner Lawrence Cutajar said earlier on Saturday that police had 48 hours to charge the two hijackers following their arrest on Friday afternoon, Xinhua news agency reported.

The Afriqiyah Airways was hijacked during an internal flight from Sebha to Tripoli by two men who threatened to blow it up.

It was diverted to Malta after the hijackers refused to land in Tripoli.

The hijacking came to a peaceful conclusion when the two men, identified as Ahmed Ali and Mousa Shada, gave themselves up after releasing 111 passengers and six crew members following a four-hour standoff.

The two hijackers, named as Ahmed Ali and Mousa Shaha, were later found to be carrying replica pistols.

The Police Commissioner said that at no point did the two men make any demands.

The passengers of the hijacked flight return to Libya Saturday morning.–IANS