This was announced by Cypriot leader Nikos Anastasiades during an address of reporters with visiting European Parliament president, Martin Schulz, Censor.NET informs citing The Guardian.
Anastasiades ruled out terrorism being behind the hijacking confirming instead that it had been instigated by a love-sick man bent on reuniting with his former Cypriot wife.
"It's all to do with a woman," said the Cypriot president. "We are doing everything to release the hostages.
Several media and news agencies reported that the hijacker is identified as Ibrahim Abdel Tawwab Samaha, a professor of veterinary medicine at Alexandria university. However, it was later reported that Ibrahim Samaha was one of the passengers released from the plane.
The woman the hijacker names as his ex-wife is now being brought to the airport to take part in the negotiations. According to latest reports, she has now arrived at the airport.
Meanwhile, officials at the Egyptian foreign ministry cast doubts on the idea that the hijacker's explosive belt might be real, given what appears to be personal motives for highjacking the plane.
Reports of more released persons were also received. The image below shows one of the crew members leaving the plane.
Photo by Reuters
"Passengers were getting ready to die": video from emergency plane landed by Ukrainian pilot in Istanbul. VIDEO(0)