Two men arrested at Rome's Fiumicino Airport on Wednesday (4 April) night, carrying hand grenades and pistols, are being held in a local jail while police try to discover if the pair were planning violence at the airport or intending to hijack an aircraft.
SV Bahrami Kiza escorted into police room at airport (2 shots)
CU Ghoulam Akbar ditto
CU Passport photo of two men (2 shots)
CU Police officer demonstrates how arms were carried around waist, waistband undone, PAN to grenades and gun on table
SCU Hand grenades and pistol
SV Kiza taken to police car
CU Akbar taken to police car
Initials ES. 1810 ES. 1820
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Background: Two men arrested at Rome's Fiumicino Airport on Wednesday (4 April) night, carrying hand grenades and pistols, are being held in a local jail while police try to discover if the pair were planning violence at the airport or intending to hijack an aircraft.
The nationality and identities of the two men have not yet been clarified. They were both carrying Iranian passports, which gave their names as Shirazi Bahrami Kiza, aged 27, and Mirzaqa Ghoulam Akbar, aged 25.
Police at the airport became suspicious when the two men loitered in the transit lounge for about three hours after they had been cleared, and did not board the Paris-bound Alitalia flight for which they held tickets.
The men, who have been charged with unlawful possession of weapons, told police they were "simple arms couriers" and were supposed to deliver the weapons to a certain European city.
Each man was carrying three hand grenades of Soviet and Czechoslovak make, and a Spanish 7.65 calibre pistol concealed in thick body belts worn under their clothing.
Vis stamps in their passports indicated that they had left Barcelona on March 27, after more than a month's stay in Spain. They had also apparently visited Paris, Munich and Athens since October.
SYNOPSIS: Italian police arrested Shirazi Bahrami Kiza, one of the two men found with hand grenades and pistols at Rome's Fiumicino Airport on Wednesday. The other was Mirzaqa Ghoulam Akbar. Police became suspicious when the pair did not board the Paris-bound Alitalis aircraft on which they were booked. They had loitered in the airport transit lounge for three hours.
Both men were carrying Iranian passports. However, their nationality and identities are not yet certain.
A search of their luggage revealed nothing suspicious, but a body search told another story. Both man were wearing these body belts beneath their clothes. Each belt carried three Soviet and Czechoslovak-made hand grenades. There were also two Spanish 7.65 calibre pistols. The men told police they were simply arms couriers and that they had been assigned to deliver the weapons to a certain European city.
Both men have been charged with illegal possession of weapons and are being held in a Rome jail.
Police are now trying to find out if the men were planning an attack at Fiumicino Airport or if they intended to hijack an aircraft. Visa stamps in the men's passports indicated that they had left Barcelona on March 27, after a stay of more than a month in Spain. They had also apparently been to Paris, Munich and Athens since October.