Pakistan International Airlines flight en route to London from Lahore was today diverted away from landing at one of UK’s busiest and largest Heathrow airport because of a “disruptive passenger” on board.
Two Royal Air Force (RAF) jets were scrambled to escort PK757 to Stansted Airport, north-east of London.
The plane landed at a remote passenger bay at Stansted, where police were on alert ready to meet the aircraft.
Local police said the diversion had been due to reports of a “disruptive passenger and is not believed to be a hijack situation or terror matter”.
An Essex Police spokesperson said: “An aircraft was diverted to Stansted Airport at around 3pm this afternoon [local time] while over UK airspace en route to Heathrow Airport due to reports of a disruptive passenger on board.
“The plane is currently at the airport and officers are making enquiries. There is no disruption to the ongoing operation of Stansted Airport.”
Stansted said the aircraft was likely to continue its journey to Heathrow soon, pending police inquiries into the person on the plane.
Initial reports of a “suspicious item” on-board seem to have been rejected.
Pakistan’s Civil Aviation Authority tweeted: “#PIA flight bound for Heathrow from Lahore has been diverted to #Stansted due to reasons aboard the aircraft.”
The RAF confirmed that Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) Typhoon aircraft had been scrambled from RAF Coningsby, in Lincolnshire.
“The aircraft was intercepted and safely escorted to Stansted Airport,” an RAF spokesperson said.