Russian plane diverts after receiving second bomb threat in two weeks

An aircraft traveling from Moscow to Goa in the early hours of Saturday has been diverted to an airport in Uzbekistan following a bomb threat.

Police said authorities at the Dabolim airport in Goa received an email claiming a bomb on the plane after it was already en route from Moscow.

The plane, operated by Russian airline Azur Air, was scheduled to land at the Dabolim airport in South Goa at 4.15 am, but it was diverted even before entering Indian airspace.

“It was diverted after an email was received at 12.30 am by the Dabolim airport director that mentioned a bomb being planted on the plane,” a senior police official said.

The plane carrying over 240 passengers made an emergency landing at an unnamed airport in Uzbekistan around 4:30 am.

All 238 passengers, including 2 infants and 7 crew members, are reportedly unharmed.

Deputy Superintendent of Police (Vasco) Salim Shaikh confirmed that the Dabolim airport was put on alert, and the personnel of Goa Police, Quick Response Team (QRT), Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) and dog squad were deployed at the facility as a precautionary measure immediately the threat mail was received.

“Additional police force has been mobilized at the airport,” he said.

This is the second time in only two weeks that such an incident occurred on an Azur Air flight, the first being a Moscow-to-Goa flight that made an emergency landing at Gujarat’s Jamnagar airport following a bomb threat on the 9th of January.

Following the January 9 incident, a statement released by the Russian embassy within hours of the incident being reported read, “The Embassy was alerted by the Indian authorities about the alleged bomb scare on the Azur Air flight en route from Moscow to Goa. The aircraft made an emergency landing at Jamnagar Indian Air Force Base. Everyone on board is safe. The authorities are conducting a thorough inspection of the aircraft.”

The plane was, however, cleared to take off the next day, January 10, after the call appeared to be a hoax.

A senior official of the Dabolim airport said a police complaint would be lodged in connection with Saturday morning’s incident.

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Umar Ali
I'm an adventurous traveler with an insatiable thirst for exploration. Whether it's wandering through winding alleys in bustling cities, trekking across rugged mountains, or lounging on a tropical beach, I am always seeking out new experiences and challenges.

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