Egypt-bound plane makes emergency landing in Athens after bomb threat

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ATHENS: A British airliner traveling from Britain to the Egyptian resort of Sharm El-Sheikh made an emergency landing at Athens airport on Monday after receiving a bomb threat.

All 213 passengers and crew aboard the Thomson Airways Boeing aircraft are safe and police are checking the plane for any explosives, Greek police and Defense Ministry officials told Reuters.

"Thomson Airways can confirm that a security alert was raised during one of its flights, TOM 226, today from Bristol to Sharm El-Sheikh. As a precautionary measure and in the interests of customer safety, the pilot took the decision to divert the aircraft into Athens airport," the company said.

"There were no customer injuries as a result of the alert," said Thomson, which is owned by UK’s TUI Travel.

The passengers are now in the airport terminal, a police official said, adding that it would take some time to check the whole plane.

Greek jets escorted the plane to Athens after it received the bomb threat, a Defense Ministry official told Reuters.

"At 1417 (1117 GMT) the plane requested to land, at 1422 (1122 GMT) two F16 jets took off from Greece and escorted it, at 1452 (1152 GMT) the Boeing landed at Athens international airport," said the official who declined to be named.

The British Foreign Office said it was looking into the incident. "We are urgently investigating," said a spokeswoman.


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