FEATURES

CURRENT ISSUE

LEAD EDITORIAL

BY PHILIP BAUM

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

The Six Day War: Its Legacy For International Civil Aviation

This month marks the 50th anniversary of the Six Day War. The conflict started on 5 June 1967 when, following Egypt’s mobilisation of troops along its border with Israel, the Israeli Air Force launched a devastating strike on Egyptian forces and all but destroyed the Egyptian Air Force in the process. Jordan and Syria then also attacked the fledgling Israeli state, believing that Egypt’s war to the south would enable them to succeed in their military…

INDUSTRY NEWS

Air Watch

18 MARCH 2017: LAHORE, PAKISTAN

An Ethiopian Airlines flight, en route from Addis Ababa to Beijing, diverted to Lahore after a suicidal male passenger tried to enter the cockpit by force. The assailant was extremely violent, making it difficult for the crew and passengers to restrain him. However, a Chinese bodybuilder, Cao Guoxiong, managed to overpower the hijacker. Reports indicate that the captain exited the flight deck and assisted Cao in applying restraints.

23 DECEMBER 2016: LUQA, MALTA

Moussa Saha and Ahmed Ali, both in their 20s, hijacked an Afriqiyah Airways on a domestic flight between Sabha and Tripoli in Libya. The two Libyan men were armed with imitation guns and grenades, and allegedly intended to divert the plane to Rome to seek asylum and to start a new political party called ‘The New Fateh’ in honour of the late dictator, Muammar Qaddafi. Due to fuel limitations, the crew landed in Malta instead. None of the 116 people on board was injured, and the hijackers surrendered after a standoff on the runway.

29 MARCH 2016: LARNACA, CYPRUS

Seif Eldin Mustafa hijacked EgyptAir flight MS181 whilst it was en route from Alexandria to Cairo. Remaining at the rear of the cabin throughout the incident, he showed the crew that he was wearing what appeared to be a suicide vest. Accordingly, the crew elected to follow his request to divert to Cyprus, where he eventually surrendered. During the negotiations, he demanded to speak with his ex-wife who was resident in Cyprus. Initial reports indicate that he was suffering mental health issues.

27 NOVEMBER 2015: SAO PAULO, BRAZIL

A man dressed as Santa Claus hijacked a helicopter, leaving the pilot, who worked for an air taxi service based at Campo Marte airport, tied up at a farm outside Sao Paulo. A second hijacker joined the festively dressed thief at the farm, and the two men and the helicopter disappeared.

30 MAY 2017: PALMA, SPAIN

It was reported that a naked man was captured on CCTV at Son Sant Joan Airport. However, by the time he was noticed during reviews of the footage, he had left the airport.

28 MAY 2017: TEL AVIV, ISRAEL

Taxi drivers of the Hadar Lod taxi firm blocked the access road to Ben Gurion in protest of a contract between the company, another taxi service, Gett, and the Israel Airports Authority that requires drivers to reduce fares to the airport by 31%. They claimed IAA threatened stakeholders of Hadar with litigation if they voted against the contract. The protest was deemed a success after Hadar pulled out of the contract, allowing drivers to continue charging passengers the same fares from the airport.

23 MAY 2017: ORLANDO, FLORIDA

An Aer Lingus flight from Orlando to Dublin was cancelled after a male cabin crewmember, 25, was arrested for alleged sexual assault at the Rosen Plaza Hotel the previous day. He was later released on bail of $10,500 (c. £8,265) and allowed to return to Ireland.

22 MAY 2017: RENO, NEVADA

Hector Torres, a businessman from Orlando, was the victim of a racist verbal assault by a man in a wheelchair after having a telephone conversation with his mother in Spanish. The man’s tirade was caught on video. He was denied boarding and escorted to the airline’s ticket desk where he was refunded for his ticket. Torres decided not to press charges.

21 MAY 2017: BEIJING, CHINA

Tim Seward, 31, was moved from the exit row seat he had paid extra for on an Asiana Airlines flight from Beijing to Soul. The flight attendant told Seward that his prosthetic leg would hinder his ability to perform exit row duties. Seward claimed he had flown in exit row seats many times before and had never been challenged.

1 JUNE 2017: BISMARCK, NORTH DAKOTA

Justin Cox-Sever, a former Skywest flight attendant, 23, was sentenced to up to five months in a transitional facility, five months of home confinement and three years of supervised release at his home in California after pleading guilty to four of five charges of interfering with aircraft, including making hoax bomb threats during two flights in 2015 in order to ‘play the hero’.

26 MAY 2017: SAIPAN, NORTHERN MARIANA ISLANDS

Jingbo Chen, 43, a former Pacific Oriental service agent was sentenced to 30 days in prison and ordered to pay $2,000 (c. £1,570) after pleading guilty to entering a secure area of the Francisco C. Ada-Saipan International Airport and removing baggage that was being held by customs in September 2015. Chen arrived at the airport in her uniform on her day off and lied to staff in order to gain access to the area. In her defence, she claimed she was asked by a pregnant woman to assist her as her husband had imported some fruit she had been craving during her pregnancy.

25 MAY 2017: KIRKALDY, SCOTLAND

Isabella Jackson, 72, was sentenced to 45 months imprisonment after pleading guilty to sending a bomb threat to Edinburgh Airport on 4 January, as well as other charges including behaving in an abusive and threatening manner towards Theresa May. She previously served a two-year sentence for threatening to blow up a flight carrying Barack Obama.

25 MAY 2017: BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND

John Cox, 46, had his sentence increased from four years and six months to nine years and six months. In January, Cox pleaded guilty to setting two fires in the toilets of a Monarch flight from Birmingham to Sharm el-Sheikh in August 2015. The Court of Appeal decided that Cox’s original sentence had been too lenient.

25 MAY 2017: NORWICH, ENGLAND

Daniel Devereux, 30, a hacker with the moniker ‘His Royal Gingerness’, pleaded guilty to cyber attacks on Norwich International Airport and Norwich University Hospital in September 2015. His defence lawyer claimed that Devereux was known as a ‘white hat hacker’, whose attacks are not intended to be malicious but to demonstrate weaknesses in cyber security. Devereux is already serving another prison sentence for an unrelated crime.

30 MAY 2017: ORLANDO, FLORIDA

Michael Wayne Pettigrew, 26, a former marine, initiated a nearly three-hour standoff with police near a car rental desk area at Orlando International Airport. Pettigrew, who was described as being in “mental distress”, aimed a realistic fake handgun at passengers, officers and himself while shouting loudly. The terminal was evacuated and flights delayed as officers spent hours talking to him. They managed to avoid firing any shots, and eventually got him to surrender peacefully.

18 MAY 2017: WADI AL SHATII DISTRICT, LIBYA

Benghazi Defense Brigades and other militants took control over Barak al-Shatti airbase in southern Libya. 141 civilians and Libyan National Army soldiers were killed in the attack.

25 MAY 2017: KABUL, AFGHANISTAN

Five people, including airport security officers, were arrested over an ‘illegal, forced diversion’ after two Afghan MPs, one of which was identified as Ghulam Hussain Naseri (see photo), missed their Kam Air flight from Kabul to Bamiyan. The politicians made calls to have rocks placed on the runway at Bamiyan, making it impossible for the flight to land and forcing it to return to Kabul. After refuelling at Kabul, the flight took off again, with the two MPs on board. In response, Kam Air announced that they were suspending indefinitely all flights to Bamiyan.

16 MAY 2017: BERLIN, GERMANY

Terminal D at Schoenefeld airport was evacuated after tear gas was set off inside the building. The incident did not lead to any flight cancellations, but did cause delays.

27 MAY 2017: SAINT MARTIN, SINT MAARTEN

Police received a bomb threat targeting a JetBlue flight from Boston heading for Princess Juliana International Airport. The airport and roads leading to it were closed, and the flight was isolated upon landing and searched, but nothing suspicious was detected.

24 MAY 2017: ISTANBUL, TURKEY

A passenger boarded an Atlasglobal flight from Ataturk, and prior to take-off handed a member of cabin crew a note that read, “I’m calling on the prime minister of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. I’m not responsible for what will happen from now on.” The flight was delayed for four hours as the aircraft was evacuated and searched, and the passenger was arrested.

9 MAY 2017: CAIRO, EGYPT

A 61-year-old retired textile worker from Egypt is alleged to have threatened to blow up a Flynas flight from Jeddah. He was restrained by security staff on board, arrested upon landing in Cairo and sent for psychiatric evaluation.

2 MAY 2017: ALOR SETAR, MALAYSIA

Two Turkish students, a 23-year-old male and a 28-year-old female, caused a section of the terminal at Sultan Abdul Halim Airport to be cordoned off and a bomb disposal unit called after the male passenger said that there was a bomb in his companion’s luggage.

15 APRIL 2017: MUMBAI, INDIA

An email claiming to be from a female Indian citizen to police in Mumbai claimed that a conversation had been overheard between six boys who were discussing a plot for 23 people to hijack three simultaneous flights from Mumbai, Chennai and Hyderabad. Security was enhanced in these three locations in response to the information, but it turned out that the email had actually been sent by a 32-year-old man, Motaparthi Vamsi Krishna, who was having an extra-marital affair and was trying to get out of taking his girlfriend on holiday.

31 MAY 2017: MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA

A Malaysia Airlines flight bound for Kuala Lumpur returned to Melbourne after a mentally ill Sri Lankan student, Manodh Marks, 25, attempted to hijack it. The man threatened to detonate a bomb and tried to enter the cockpit, but was tackled, restrained and tied up by four of his fellow passengers. The man had recently been released from a psychiatric facility in Melbourne, and is not believed to have any links to terrorist organisations, and no explosives were discovered on the plane.

31 MAY 2017: CASTLE DONINGTON, ENGLAND

A hen party of 18, led by bride Emma Green, 35, was removed from a Jet2 flight to Magaluf after repeatedly refusing to remove or cover up their T-shirts with the slogan, ‘Bitches on Tour’.

30 MAY 2017: ISTANBUL, TURKEY

A Nigerian woman was removed from a Turkish flight for assaulting a member of cabin crew. The woman claimed she had asked for a cup of water five times. When she was eventually brought one, she knocked the cup out of the flight attendant’s hand.

29 MAY 2017: LAS VEGAS, NEVADA

Stephan Kennedy, 28, was removed from a Chicago-bound Southwest Airlines flight for being intoxicated, but later ran back onto the aircraft, pushing past passengers and crew. Kennedy was restrained by flight crew and handed over to police prior to take-off.

27 MAY 2017: CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND

A man was arrested when his Jetstar flight from Australia landed in Christchurch because a fellow female passenger complained to cabin crew that he had molested her during the flight.

23 MAY 2017: NEW YORK, NEW YORK

Phani Kumar Varanasi, 41, an Indian national, entered a sterile area of LaGuardia Airport after disembarking his flight. He claimed he had wandered into the area by mistake but was not challenged by the TSA agent seated behind a desk at the entrance. He walked around the area for around five minutes before exiting out of the same door, still unchallenged. Varanasi had left the airport by the time the breach was acknowledged, but he was identified by officers using flight records and CCTV footage, and subsequently arrested.

22 MAY 2017: PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA

Jennifer Lee Henry, 46, allegedly became drunk and racially abusive towards airport employees. During her arrest she is also reported to have spat kicked and attempted to trip officers.

21 MAY 2017: BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS

Darnell E. Williams, 29, a masseur working at Be Relax Massage Studio at Logan International Airport was accused of raping a 25-year-old woman 35 minutes into an hour-long massage. The victim claimed she told Williams to stop immediately but he refused. Police reported that the woman became distraught and physically ill after the incident and continued to be ill during her flight.

19 MAY 2017: ABUJA, NIGERIA

Two passengers were caught stealing from a fellow passenger’s hand baggage during an Arik Air flight from Lagos.

The Final Word

BUYER’S GUIDE