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Gunman holds plane, crew at airport in Jamaica
Posted on: 20-04-2009 , 04:: | DY365 Bureau

The gunman boarded the plane after it arrived in Montego Bay from Halifax, Nova Scotia, according to a statement from CanJet Airlines. There were 182 passengers and crew aboard the Boeing 737, but all the passengers were released unharmed, the company said.

The gunman and the crew of CanJet Flight 918 were still on board the plane early Monday, the airline said in a statement published early Monday on its Web site. Jamaican Information Minister Daryl Vaz told CNN that two crew members were released and five others were still on the plane.

The gunman is a "mentally challenged youngster" who demanded to be flown to Cuba, Vaz said. He is about 20 years old and Jamaican, and his father was assisting with negotiations, Vaz said.

Prime Minister Bruce Golding was traveling to Montego Bay in response to the emergency, Radio Jamaica reported.

The situation began around 10 p.m. Sunday, according to Elizabeth Scotton, a spokeswoman for Montego Bay's Sangster International Airport.

The airline said "a full security operation is under way" and it is cooperating with authorities in this Caribbean island.

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who was in Jamaica for a one-day visit, was awakened with the news early Monday and was monitoring developments, his office told The Canadian Press.


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