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Sudanese Hijacking Ends With Surrender No One Injured After Pilot Forced To Fly To Eritrea

MONDAY, MARCH 25, 1996

A Sudanese airliner carrying 40 passengers was hijacked Sunday to the neighboring nation of Eritrea, but reports said the incident ended with the surrender of two hijackers and no casualties.

Egypt’s Middle East News Agency said the domestic flight was en route from the Sudanese capital Khartoum to Port Sudan when the pilot was forced to divert to the Eritrean capital of Asmara.

The hijacker, identified only as a Sudanese man, had demanded that the plane be flown on to Jiddah in Saudi Arabia, MENA said.

Later, the Saudi Arabian television network Middle East Broadcasting Corp. quoted the captain of the hijacked jet, Capt. Bashir Ali, as saying the hijack ended in Asmara and all passengers and crew were safe.

The network reported the two hijackers surrendered and said they were connected to Sudanese opposition parties. No other details were available.

Sudan’s Muslim fundamentalist government has been fighting a 13-year-old civil war with Christian and animist rebels seeking autonomy for the country’s south. More than 1.3 million people have died in the conflict and resultant famines.

Sudan also has been accused of widespread human rights violations.

Eritrea is at odds with Sudan, which it accuses of supporting Eritrean Islamic rebels.



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