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Jordanian Jetliner Reporter Hijacked on Beirut Takeoff

Associated Press

Gunmen hijacked a Royal Jordanian Airlines jetliner as it took off from Beirut Airport with 97 passengers aboard today and forced it to fly toward Cyprus, local radio stations said.

The Voice of the Nation radio station said the commandeered Boeing 727 was flying over the Mediterranean island of Cyprus at midmorning. The Muslim radio station gave no further details.

There was no word on the number of hijackers or on their demands.

A series of bomb attacks on the airline’s offices in Athens, Rome and Nicosia, Cyprus, last March prompted it to establish stringent security measures on the ground and on board.

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Passengers are regularly frisked inside planes. The aircraft are guarded by eight Jordanian security agents.

The airline also is known as Alia.


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