Migrants flee plane after forcing emergency landing in Barcelona

Journalists gather after a commercial airplane flying from Morocco to Turkey made an emergency landing in Barcelona's El Prat airport in the early hours and 28 would-be migrants on board ran away across the tarmac in Barcelona, Spain December 7, 2022. REUTERS/Nacho Doce

BARCELONA (Reuters) -A commercial airplane flying from Morocco to Turkey made an emergency landing at Barcelona's El Prat airport early on Wednesday after a reported medical event and 28 of the passengers fled across the tarmac, the Spanish government said.

Police initially detained 14 people, including a pregnant woman who officials claim pretended that her water had broken, prompting the emergency landing, the government said.

Two people were arrested later, the government added, one of whom was apprehended inside the airport and the other who was found outside.

A further 12 people have not yet been located.

Five of those detained were immediately put back on the plane, operated by Turkey's Pegasus Airlines, while at least eight are to be deported to Morocco.

The pregnant woman was checked in hospital and found not to be in labour, the government said.

The plane was carrying a total of 228 passengers from Casablanca to Istanbul.

In October last year, a group of passengers fled a plane onto the runway at Spain's Mallorca island following an emergency landing under a false pretext and 12 of them were arrested, while another 12 escaped.

(Reporting by Joan Faus, Inti Landauro and David Latona; Editing by Andrei Khalip and Leslie Adler)

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