UPDATE 2: Saudia flight isolated at NAIA; ‘false alarm,’ says airline

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saudiaA SAUDI Arabian Airlines flight has been isolated by authorities at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport after the Manila control tower received word that it was “under threat.”

But the alert that prompted police to surround the Saudia plane at Manila airport on Tuesday was a “false alarm”, an airline spokesman told Agence France-Presse.

There was a “false alarm for hijack for Flight 872,” the spokesman told Agence France-Presse in the Saudi capital Riyadh.

The Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) said it was advised by the control tower that Saudia Airlines Flight SV872 sent the warning 20 miles before landing.

“MIAA together with PNP Aviation Security Group now on site with aircraft on standby at designated isolation area. Saudia airline executives now also on site,” the MIAA report said.

“Pending confirmation of advise received, PNP [aviation security]and MIAA authorities now implementing [standard operating procedures]in accordance with the airport emergency plan,” it added.

Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines spokesman Eric Apolonio said: “A Saudi plane has been isolated at the airport runway.”

A passenger, Lavi Macabando, however told the ABS-CBN News Channel said everything was “normal” inside the plane and that they were told to remain calm.

Macabando, an engineer, said the passengers were not told of any hijacking incident while inside the plane.

Some passengers have disembarked from the plane based on a Facebook video uploaded by another passenger. AFP

AFP/CC

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