A young Czechoslovakian couple have pulled off the briefest and least harrowing in the recent series of airliner hijackings.
GV PAN: Frankfurt airport, West Germany.
GVS & LV: Hijacked Czechoslovak YAK-40 aircraft on tarmac. (THREE SHOTS)
GV: Armoured car AND GVS other security around aircraft. (THREE SHOTS)
GV: Group of people rear aircraft gangway.
SV: Group on balcony. watching.
LVS & SV: Hijacked passengers down aircraft front gangway, and photographer filming (THREE SHOTS)
SV: Armoured car and police vehicle down road past police checkpoint.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: A young Czechoslovakian couple have pulled off the briefest and least harrowing in the recent series of airliner hijackings. On Tuesday (11 October) the couple, a man and a woman, hijacked at pistol point short-range jet of Czechoslovakia's national airline, ESA, on a domestic flight between the northwestern city of Karlovy Vary and Prague. They ordered it to Munich airport in West Germany but it landed at Frankfurt for refuelling. After they surrendered to airport police and asked for political asylum, the plane, with its remaining 22 passengers and three crew members, flew on to Prague the same evening.
SYNOPSIS: This is Frankfurt's international Rhine-Main airport where the plane landed. The couple's request to be taken to Munich got no further. They accepted an airport official's explanation that refuelling was a political decision and could not be granted straight away. Security forces quickly swept into action. They have had a lot of practice with aircraft hijacked from neighbouring Czechoslovakia. This was the sixth to come to West Germany since 1970.
The hijackers allowed all passengers to disembark safely before surrendering to police. Frankfurt police said both hijackers worked as ground staff personnel for the Czechoslovakian airline, the woman Ruzena Vlckova, 22, as an air terminal clerk in Prague. The Czechoslovakian-news agency, Ceteka, claimed the man Vlastimil Toupalik, 30, was being sued at home for non-payment of child support. In seeking political asylum, the couple followed the suit of previous Czechoslovakian hijackers. A Czechoslovakian interpreter was summoned to help with negotiations.