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Published on Monday, May 23, 2016

Fighter jets intercept Delta plane after pilots fail to respond

Just hours after the crash of EgyptAir crash in the Mediterranean, a Delta Air Lines flight came close to a potential disaster in the same region.
The Frankfurt to Kuwait charter flight entered Greece airspace without identifying itself and pilots failed to respond to calls from air traffic controllers for more than one hour, an official from the Greek defense ministry confirmed to AFP.
Due to the heightened security fears following the EgyptAir crash, F-16 fighter jets were scrambled by the Greek defense ministry.
According to media reports fighter pilots reportedly made visual contact with the pilots and said they appeared to be asleep at their seats in the cockpit.
One of the F-16 attempted to alert the cockpit with light signals
Some media reports said the pilots were eventually alerted by cabin crew who were in turn informed by passengers after seeing the fighter jets.
A Delta statement said: "While transiting to Greek airspace, the flight crew of Delta flight 8957, a charter operation from Hahn, Germany to Kuwait, was unable to establish radio communications with Greek air traffic control for a short period." 
"This occurred during a handoff between air traffic control agencies and communications were expeditiously re-established. At no point did the Boeing 767-400ER leave its planned route of flight."
The plane eventually landed without incident.

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