Air India sends plane after US-bound jet stops in Russia
AFP | New Delhi
The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com
Air India said on Wednesday it had sent a relief airplane after a jet from New Delhi to San Francisco had to land in eastern Russia with an engine problem.
The flight with 216 passengers and 16 crew was diverted to Magadan on Russia's eastern coast, over 5,900 kilometres (3,670 miles) from Moscow on Tuesday night.
With "infrastructural limitations around the remote airport", passengers were put up in "makeshift accommodation" in the town, Air India said in a statement.
"Our ferry flight AI195 from Mumbai to Magadan, Russia is now airborne," Air India said in a statement, noting it was expected to arrive at 6:30 am Thursday (1930 GMT Wednesday).
"The aircraft operating the ferry flight will take all passengers and crew onward to San Francisco", it added.
It gave no details on if there were US citizens in Magadan, with tensions high between Moscow and Washington, especially over Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
Speaking to reporters in Washington, State Department principal deputy spokesman Vedant Patel said the United States was monitoring the situation closely.
"I am not able to confirm how many US citizens were aboard the flight at this time," he said.
"It was a flight that was bound for the United States, so it is of course likely that there are American citizens on board."