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Cyprus extradites hijacking suspect to Egypt

By Allen Cone
Seif Eldin Mustafa, who was arrested after he hijacked an EgyptAir flight and forced it to land, leaves court in Larnaca, Cyprus on March 30, 2016. He was extradited to Eygpt on Saturday. Photo by Katia Christodoulou
Seif Eldin Mustafa, who was arrested after he hijacked an EgyptAir flight and forced it to land, leaves court in Larnaca, Cyprus on March 30, 2016. He was extradited to Eygpt on Saturday. Photo by Katia Christodoulou

Aug. 19 (UPI) -- Cyprus has extradited a EgyptAir hijacking suspect to Egypt after a two-year legal battle.

A security mission from Egyptian Interpol on Saturday accompanied Seif al-Din Mustafa, 60, back to his native country.

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He is accused of hijacking a flight from Alexandria's Borg al-Arab International Airport in Egypt to Cairo in March 2016. Wearing a fake suicide belt, he forced its captain to head to Cyprus, where the plane then landed at Larnaca International Airport. The plane carried 56 passengers and six crew members.

Mostafa had told Cypriot authorities that he hijacked so that he could seek asylum and be reunited with his Cypriot family after 24 years of absence.

Mostafa, resisting extradition, said he would not face a fair trial in Egypt.

Egypt wanted Cyprus to hand over Mustafa under a 1996 bilateral extradition treaty.

The Supreme Court of Cyprus rejected the suspect's appeal.

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