Tel Aviv-London plane makes emergency landing after passenger tries to open door

Wizz Air plane forced to touch down in Belgrade as unruly traveler reportedly attempts to attack crew, open an emergency exit mid-flight

Illustrative image of the pink and purple stripes of a Wizz Air plane. (Wizz Air)
Illustrative image of the pink and purple stripes of a Wizz Air plane. (Wizz Air)

A Wizz Air flight from Tel Aviv to London was forced to land in Belgrade due to an unruly passenger.

Flight W9 4452 departed on Monday for Luton Airport but landed in Serbia after the passenger tried to attack the flight crew and open an emergency exit, the report said. The reason for the disturbance was not given.

The other passengers spent the night in Belgrade and were expected to board a new flight to the UK later Tuesday.

A statement from Wizz Air to Channel 12 news confirmed the incident, ascribing it to an unruly passenger.

“The company is dealing with the onward flight of all customers to London. The safety and security of passengers and crew are the company’s top priority. The company regrets the inconvenience caused by this unexpected incident,” the statement said.

It wasn’t initially clear whether the passenger in question was Israeli.

In July, an Easyjet flight from Tel Aviv to Amsterdam made a forced landing in Venice after a reportedly drunk passenger attacked others onboard.

A passenger who was on board posted about the incident on Facebook and described how Italian police detained the man when the plane landed but he escaped as they were driving him away. Video showed the backdoor to a patrol car opening and the man leaping out. He then attacked officers who approached him.

I TOOK OFF FOR HOLLAND BUT LANDED IN ITALYBy Tour Guide Robby Berman I’m right now on a plane stranded in Venice. I…

Posted by Robby Berman on Thursday, July 20, 2023

The disruptive passenger was eventually arrested and taken away by police. After a wait, the flight continued to Amsterdam.

Last week, an Air Seychelles jet with over 100 Israelis on board was forced to make an emergency landing in Saudi Arabia due to electrical problems. Passengers spent the night in Jeddah and then boarded what became the first-ever direct passenger flight from Saudi Arabia to Israel.

Israel and Saudi Arabia do not have formal ties, making the presence of the Israelis there a potential diplomatic issue. The countries have inched closer in recent years and are reportedly nearing a possible US-brokered diplomatic breakthrough, with the flight representing a rare instance of public cooperation between Jerusalem and Riyadh.

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