The British authorities detained 14 crew members of a Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight and the aircraft was “thoroughly searched” over security threats after it landed at London’s Heathrow Airport.
The Dawn and the Express Tribune reports quoted PIA spokesperson Mashhood Tajwar, as saying that Flight PK-785 from Islamabad to London arrived at Heathrow Airport at 2.50 pm on Monday, and after passengers disembarked, the flight crew and aircraft were searched by London authorities.
The crew was released after two hours of interrogation pertaining to the security concerns, Geo News reported on Tuesday.
“We have not been informed as to why was the crew detained,” said Tajwar. The crew members’ passports were also taken away by the police, the report said. According to the British Police, the crew was taken under custody over security concerns but was released later as nothing was found during the search operation.
Pakistan International Airlines said it is seeking to protest against the British Police misconduct with the flight crew. The flight, meanwhile, was later cleared to take off from Heathrow Airport with replaced crew members.
In March this year, a terrorist attack took place in the vicinity of the Palace of Westminster in London. The attacker, identified as 52-year-old Briton Khalid Masood, drove a car into pedestrians on the pavement, injuring more than 50 people, four of them fatally.
After the car crashed into the perimeter fence of the Palace grounds, Masood abandoned it and ran into New Palace Yard where he fatally stabbed an unarmed police officer. He was later shot dead by a cop.
(With IANS inputs)