Monitoring situation, says US after San Francisco-bound Air India flight lands in Russia
Vedant Patel, deputy spokesperson, US state department, however, failed to confirm how many American citizens were aboard the Air India flight.
Representational Image (Photo by SAJJAD HUSSAIN/AFP via Getty Images)
The US on Tuesday (6) said it was keeping a close watch on the situation after an Air India flight, travelling from New Delhi to San Francisco, made an emergency landing in Russia, one of its major adversaries in global politics.
The flight, AI173, was diverted to Magadan in Russia the same day owing to an engine glitch, the Tata Group-owned private carrier said in a statement issued in the evening. The plane, with 216 passengers and 16 crew members, landed safely.
Reacting on the incident, Vedant Patel, deputy spokesperson, US state department, said they were aware of a US-bound flight making an emergency landing in Russia and are monitoring the situation closely.
He, however, failed to confirm how many American citizens were aboard the Air India flight.
“It was a flight that was bound for the United States. So, it is, of course, likely that there are American citizens on board. There’s public reporting from Air India that they are sending – what my understanding is – a replacement aircraft to the destination to have the passengers carry on for their route, but I would defer to the air carrier to speak to anything further on this,” Patel said in response to a question.
A replacement flight from the Indian carrier to Magadan to fly out the stranded passengers of the AI173 flight was delayed as Air India officials were working through regulatory issues. The exact time of departure of the replacement flight was yet to be confirmed.
According to an NDTV report, several stranded passengers of the Air India plane in Russia were kept in dormitories with hotel infrastructure in an area which is unable to cope with the number of passengers travelling in the flight.