Ukrainian on trial in Turkey for attempted hijack

Turkish private company Pegasus passenger plane at the Sabiha Gokcen Airport in Istanbul, Turkey, Friday, Feb. 7, 2014, after a Ukrainian passenger on board Istanbul-bound flight claimed there was a bomb on board and tried to hijack the plane to Sochi, Russia, where the winter Olympics are kicking off, an official said. All 110 passengers aboard the plane were evacuated "without any problems" after authorities subdued the man who attempted to hijack the Turkish plane to Sochi, Russia.(AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkey’s state-run the agency says a Ukrainian man on trial for trying to hijack a Turkey-bound flight to Sochi, Russia, as the Winter Olympics were beginning in February, has testified that he wanted to draw world attention to events in his country.

Anadolu Agency said Artem Kozlov said during his trial Wednesday that he boarded the plane with the intention of visiting Istanbul but later decided to use the opportunity to protest the now-ousted, pro-Russia government in Ukraine.

Prosecutors say Kozlov claimed to have a bomb and tried to divert the Pegasus Airlines flight, which originated in Kharkiv, Ukraine, on Feb. 7. He faces between 11 and 42 years in prison if convicted of attempted hijacking and hostage-taking.

Anadolu said Kozlov denied that he threatened to set off a bomb.

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