Aeroflot plane lands in Iceland after bomb threat

By ANNA ANDERSEN

The Associated Press

Published: August 16, 2012 11:47AM
Updated: August 16, 2012 09:04PM

Reykjavik, Iceland • An Aeroflot plane carrying 256 people from New York to Moscow made an unscheduled landing in Iceland on Thursday following a report of a bomb on board, authorities said. Police said no explosives were found after an extensive search.

The plane, an Airbus A330, landed at Iceland’s Keflavik International Airport where baggage and passengers were being inspected as part of the search for explosives. Two passengers were briefly taken into custody for questioning but were released.

Russia’s ITAR-Tass news agency quoted Aeroflot spokeswoman Irina Dannenberg as saying the bomb warning came from an anonymous caller to New York City police after the plane took off.

A U.S. law enforcement official with knowledge of the investigation told The Associated Press an anonymous call was placed to authorities in New York about 90 minutes into the flight. It was not clear whether the call came from the plane or from elsewhere. The official did not know the language of the threat but said it referred to explosives on the plane.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because of the continuing investigation. A New York Police Department spokesman said his agency was not aware of receiving the call.

Iris Marelsdottir of Iceland’s Civil Protection Agency said all the passengers were safe and being taken care of by the Red Cross at the airport, not in Reykjavik as she had said earlier.