Turkish plane returns to gate after passengers sent crash photos

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May 10 (UPI) — A plane destined for Turkey was forced to return to the gate before takeoff at Tel Aviv’s airport Tuesday afternoon after multiple passengers received photos of plane crashes on their phones, authorities confirmed.

The Anadolujet Boeing 737 was carrying 160 passengers and bound for Istanbul when the passengers received the images, and the pilot returned to the gate at Ben Gurion Airport.

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Anadolujet is a regional carrier operated by parent Turkish Airlines and operates domestic flights while also flying to Northern Cyprus, Western Europe and Western Asia.

Authorities arrested nine people after removing them from the airliner.

The images allegedly included a Turkish Airlines plane that crashed in the Netherlands in 2009, as well as a separate crash in the United States in 2013, the BBC reported.

Police questioned the suspects on suspicion of spreading false information causing fear and panic, the newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported, adding that all the images were received on iPhones. The suspects reportedly were Israeli citizens.

Passengers later received the option to reboard, and the plane eventually left for Turkey.

The incident comes less than three weeks after an American family caused a panic at the same airport by attempting to carry an unexploded artillery shell through a checkpoint.

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