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Air China plane diverts after fountain pen hostage drama

An Air China flight had to be diverted after a passenger held a crew member hostage using a fountain pen as a weapon.

Flight 1350 was heading from Changsha to Beijing on Sunday morning when the man tried to use the pen to hold the flight attendant “under duress”, according to China’s Civil Aviation Administration.

The plane made an unscheduled landing in the central Chinese city of Zhengzhou just before 10am for what the airline called “public safety reasons”.

All passengers on board the flight had been evacuated through the plane’s back exit by 10.50am, and the man was subdued after 1pm, according to the South China Morning Post.

The city’s airport described the reason for the diversion as “illegal interference”, adding that other passengers were in a stable mood and the airport was operating normally.

Nobody was hurt in the incident and another plane was sent so the passengers could resume their journey.

The Xiaoxiang Morning Herald quoted a passenger as saying that the problem was in first or business class.

She said she had looked out of the window and to see police cars, ambulances and fire engines outside the plane as it landed.

Chinese police said the 41-year-old passenger, identified only by his last name Xu, had a “history of mental illness”.

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