A man (C) who attempted to hijack an airliner from Ukraine is escorted by police after the plane was forced down on Febuary 7, 2014 at Sabiha Goksen airport in Istanbul. AFP PHOTO / BULENT KILIC
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A Ukrainian man who allegedly tried to hijack a Turkey-bound commercial flight and divert it to Sochi on the day of the Winter Olympics' opening ceremony wanted to press for the release of anti-government protesters in his country, authorities said Saturday.The 45-year old Ukrainian man, identified by Turkish media as Artem Hozlov, claimed he had a bomb and tried to divert a Pegasus Airlines flight, which originated in Kharkiv, Ukraine, to Sochi, Russia, on Friday.Turkey's private NTV television quoting an unnamed passenger on board the plane said the man was demanding freedom for prisoners in Ukraine as well as former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, who is Yanukovych's top foe and serving a seven-year sentence on charges of abuse of office.
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