BEIRUT

Middle East

Ukrainian on trial in Turkey for attempted hijack

The Olympic Rings are silhouetted as fireworks light up the sky. (AP Photo/Nathan Denette)

ANKARA: Turkey's state-run the agency says a Ukrainian man on trial for trying to hijack a Turkey-bound flight to Sochi, Russia, as the Winter Olympics were beginning in February, has testified that he wanted to draw world attention to events in his country.

Anadolu Agency said Artem Kozlov said during his trial Wednesday that he boarded the plane with the intention of visiting Istanbul but later decided to use the opportunity to protest the now-ousted, pro-Russia government in Ukraine.

Prosecutors say Kozlov claimed to have a bomb and tried to divert the Pegasus Airlines flight, which originated in Kharkiv, Ukraine, on Feb. 7. He faces between 11 and 42 years in prison if convicted of attempted hijacking and hostage-taking.

Anadolu said Kozlov denied that he threatened to set off a bomb.

 

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