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Air Mauritania 737 reported Hijacked (Reuters)

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Air Mauritania 737 reported Hijacked (Reuters)

Old 15th Feb 2007, 18:15
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Air Mauritania 737 reported Hijacked (Reuters)

Just on BBC News 24 just now - currently at Dakar taking on fuel according to Reuters who quote the Mauritanian police.
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Old 15th Feb 2007, 18:44
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"Reports said it had later landed on Las Palmas, in the Spanish Canary Islands, after making a scheduled fuel stop in Western Sahara."

BBC
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Old 15th Feb 2007, 18:47
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URGENT Hijackers of Mauritanian plane want to go to France

NOUAKCHOTT, Feb 15, 2007 (AFP) - Hijackers who took control of a
Mauritanian passenger plane Thursday which landed on the Spanish
islands of Las Palmas are seeking to go to France, security sources
said.
hos-cpy/sn/rlp

AFP
151946 GMT FEB 07
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Old 15th Feb 2007, 18:57
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Las Palmas-spanish Emergency Services Say Several Injured By
Gunfire In Air Mauritania Plane Hijacking (reuters)
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Old 15th Feb 2007, 19:45
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AP says it is over

""It has been liberated," the Associated Press news agency quoted foreign ministry spokesman Manuel Cacho as saying. "The hijacker has been detained.""

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/6366781.stm
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Old 15th Feb 2007, 19:58
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According to the spanish online paper 'El Mundo', only minor injuries during the plane evac. No gunfire injuries. The plane landed at the military base of Gando, where it was surrounded by the military and the police. Later it looks like elite troops broke into the plane arresting the man. The government has confirmed no injuries and no damage to the plane either. Now police is investigating if the man acted alone or there are more people involved that are trying to remain hidden among the passengers.

Well done for the crew and the cops.

Regards
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Old 15th Feb 2007, 23:55
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Passengers overpowered an armed man who hijacked a Mauritanian plane today when he was knocked off his feet during a hard landing, a source close to the Mauritanian presidency said.
The Air Mauritania Boeing 737 was on an internal flight in Mauritania when the hijacker, armed with pistols, demanded to be flown to France, officials said.
The pilot landed in Spain's Canary Islands instead, where Spanish police arrested the hijacker.
"When the pilot landed he deliberately braked very hard. The man fell to the ground and was jumped on by passengers. He fired two bullets but there are no serious injuries," the Mauritanian source told Reuters.







If that's the case - well done to pilot and passengers!
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Old 16th Feb 2007, 00:05
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Fair play to the pilots and passengers for taking him out.
Hopefully it sends out a message that passengers dont take to hijackings to lightly anymore.
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Old 16th Feb 2007, 11:59
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Your Coffee Sir

Sometimes we can all enjoy a bit of FRENCH
.
Pilot and Passengers Thwart Hijacker in Canary Islands
Published: February 16, 2007
Filed at 7:22 a.m. ET
.
TENERIFE, Canary Islands (AP) -- A fast-thinking pilot with passengers in cahoots fooled a gunman who had hijacked a jetliner flying from Africa to the Canary Islands, braking hard upon landing then quickly accelerating to knock the man down so travelers could pounce on him, Spanish officials said Friday.
The Air Mauritania Boeing 737 carrying 71 passengers and a crew of eight was hijacked by a lone gunman brandishing two pistols Thursday evening shortly after it took off from Nouakchott, the capital of Mauritania, for Gran Canaria, one of Spain's Canary Islands, with a planned stopover in Nouadhibou in northern Mauritania.
.
The hijacking alarmed Spanish officials because a trial of 29 people accused in the Madrid terrorist bombings of 2004 had begun the same day in Madrid. But the man's motives were not terrorism, rather he wanted the plane to fly to France so he could request political asylum, said Mohamed Ould Mohamed Cheikh, Mauritania's top police official.
.
''We were afraid. We thought it was people from al-Qaida or the Algerian GSPC who were going to cut our throats,'' said Aicha Mint Sidi, a 45-year-old woman who was on the plane. The GSPC is a Muslim extremist group.
''I trembled during and after the hijacking. I thought the plane was going to blow up any minute, either in mid-air or on landing,'' said another passenger, Dahi Ould Ali, 52. Both spoke after returning to Nouakchott.
.
The hijacker has been identified as Mohamed Abderraman, a 32-year-old Mauritanian, said an official with the Spanish Interior Ministry office on Tenerife, another of the islands in the Atlantic archipelago. He spoke under ground rules barring publication of his name. Mauritania has said the hijacker was a Moroccan from the Western Sahara.
.
The hijacker ordered the pilot to fly to France, but the crew told him there was not enough fuel. And Morocco denied a request to land in the city of Djala in the Moroccan-controlled Western Sahara, so the pilot headed for Las Palmas in Gran Canaria, the original destination.
.
Along the way, speaking to the hijacker, the pilot realized the man did not speak French. So he used the plane's public address system to warn the passengers in French of the ploy he was going to try: brake hard upon landing, then speed up abruptly. The idea was to catch the hijacker off balance, and have crew members and men sitting in the front rows of the plane jump him, the Spanish official said.
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The pilot also warned women and children to move to the back of the plane in preparation for the subterfuge, the official said.
.
It worked. The man was standing in the middle aisle when the pilot carried out his maneuver, and he fell to the floor, dropping one of his two 7 mm pistols. Flight attendants then threw boiling water from a coffee machine in his face and at his chest, and some 10 people jumped on the man and beat him, the Spanish official said.
Around 20 people were slightly injured when the plane braked suddenly, the official said.
.
The hijacker was arrested by Spanish police who boarded the plane after it landed at Gando airport, outside Las Palmas.
Air Mauritania identified the heroic pilot as Ahmedou Mohamed Lemine, a 20-year-veteran of the company.
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Old 16th Feb 2007, 12:18
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Brilliant stuff Dagger!

Quick thinking by the pilot!
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Old 16th Feb 2007, 17:07
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Devil Not in the EU

VSB

If you read Dirk's posting carefully, you will find that the Spanish authorities boarded the plane to arrest him. He can therefore be deported because he was "refused entry" before arriving in the EU.

The Germans and the Swiss check passports on the airway / jetway which is NOT EU or national territory - whereas the building to which the airway / jetway is attached is part of the "National Territory". Once you get both feet in there - you ask for asylum and - its a done deal.

A very fine point of law, but used in many countries. Any lawyers care to comment! Gofer
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Old 16th Feb 2007, 17:19
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Mind you, it's a brilliant line for dodgy landings isn't it? "Sorry, I thought there was a hijacker standing up"
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Old 16th Feb 2007, 18:04
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He is now in the EU
No, he's not. He's in the Canaries, which are outside the EU customs area.

Just like any other criminal, he can be deported as part of his sentence or immediately after serving any time of penal servitude.

The people who really need their arses kicked are the airport authorities in Western Sahara who refuelled the aircraft and let it go. They should have placed a pair of armoured vehicles to block the aircaft from moving and called in the appropriate special forces to sort the bastard out.

No aircraft should be permitted to depart under the control of a hijacker.
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Old 16th Feb 2007, 19:16
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Wink Low Flyer

Is it me, or did you misread the 1st posting by Dagger Dirk
The hijacker ordered the pilot to fly to France, but the crew told him there was not enough fuel. And Morocco denied a request to land in the city of Djala in the Moroccan-controlled Western Sahara, so the pilot headed for Las Palmas in Gran Canaria, the original destination.
Sorry I cant see any intermediate landing here - the mess was created at the airport of departure - but he only manifested himself after take-off according to DIRK's posting ?
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Old 17th Feb 2007, 01:22
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how does one do that?

The press reports describe the pilot as braking hard followed by abrupt acceleration--in order to throw the hijacker holding a gun to his head to the floor.

The abrupt acceleration seems puzzling, given real spool-up times, and 10200 feet of runway.

What does one do? Land Navy style--advancing the throttles on or just before touchdown, so that by the end of the braking pulse there will be enough thrust to give a useful jerk? Then heavy braking again?

Desperate situations require bold solutions--this fellow seems to have seen that as few do.
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Old 17th Feb 2007, 12:19
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Originally Posted by gofer
A very fine point of law, but used in many countries. Any lawyers care to comment!
'Fraid so. I don't believe this is correct. When the aircraft has landed, the person is in the EU and in the country concerned, and the treaties (Conventions) on asylum and human rights already apply. If you ask for asylum on the jetway, you still have to be dealt with as an asylum seeker.

Checking passports on the jetway is not so that people can be sent back before those treaties apply to them. It is so that anyone who doesn't have a passport or other travel document and is therefore going to have to be dealt with as an illegal/asylum seeker is identified at the outset together with the flight on which they arrived, before they mingle with other passengers.
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Old 17th Feb 2007, 12:35
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Cool Globaliser

The customs officer I discussed this with indicated - in his humble understanding - that the key word was "LANDED".

Now for a ship this has a clear meaning - to have gone down the gangway and thus placed BOTH feet on "terra firma" or land - thus in a more profound English - to have disembarqued (a "barque" being French and Middle English I believe also for a ship or boat).

When applied to the new sport of Aviation the gangway became the jetway or steps and the disembarquation was deemed to have taken place on either terra firma or having left the jetway, landing being just like docking for a boat.

Now who is right and what the jurisprudence indicates, escapes a layman such as myself - but am most curious to hear further ideas, opinions or links to judgements or rulings hereon.
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Old 17th Feb 2007, 13:32
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Applying heavy braking for a moment then releasing and reapplying the brakes would have given the effect of re-accelerating. This certainly would have caught him out, because while he was attempting to recover from the initial braking, suddenly he's overcompensated and might fall backwards.

Well done!
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Old 17th Feb 2007, 13:42
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Security

Well that's the last time we can use that trick!
The terrorist training schools will already be working on a remedy.
Good to see a bit of initiative being used against these thugs, however.
FC.
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Old 17th Feb 2007, 14:59
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Air Mauritania 737

I seem to remember this type of action or similar being used by a Syrian Air Caravelle back around 1975 or so in I think Allepo.
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