Turkish flight aborts takeoff in Israel after passengers receive images of plane crashes

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Turkish flight aborts takeoff in Israel after passengers receive images of plane crashes

A Turkish airliner bound for Istanbul aborted its takeoff in Israel on Tuesday and returned to the gate after passengers began receiving phone messages containing images of plane crashes, officials said.

Nine of the 160 passengers aboard the Boeing 737 operated by AnadoluJet, a subsidiary of Turkish Airlines, were detained at Ben Gurion Airport, the Times of Israel reported, citing the Israel Airports Authority.

The plane was taxiing to the runway when passengers alerted the flight attendants that they had received the alarming photos on their iPhones.

The images were shared via AirDrop, an Apple service that allows users to send files from one Apple device to another across short distances, the Hebrew Ynet news outlet reported.

The messages reportedly included images of a Turkish Airlines plane that crashed in the Netherlands in 2009 and another plane crash in the US in 2013.

crashed plane
The images included a Turkish Airlines plane that crashed in the Netherlands in 2009.
AP
Crashed plane
The photos were all sent via the Apple AirDrop function from passengers inside the plane.
Israel Airports Authority
Israel Plane Crash Photos
Nine passengers were taken into custody.
Israel Airports Authority

All of the passengers were required to leave the aircraft for further security checks, including all the luggage, before the flight was allowed to depart, officials said.

The nine passengers who were held were all from a village in northern Israel and about 18 years old, according to the Times of Israel.

They were taken in for questioning on suspicion of sending the images, “which could be interpreted as constituting a threat to carry out an attack,” officials said.

Israel Plane Crash Photos
All of the passengers were taken off the plane for additional security checks following the incident.
REUTERS

The incident occurred two weeks after another security scare at Israel’s main international airport when a US family arrived with a live artillery shell they had planned to take home as a souvenir.

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