Supersonic jets escort Ryanair plane after security alert

The runway at Stansted Airport was closed for a short time

Supersonic jets escort Ryanair plane after security alert

Photocall file photo

Military jets from Britain have escorted a Ryanair plane to Stansted Airport in London.

The Irish carrier said a flight from Kaunas in Lithuania to London Luton was diverted to Stansted "after Lithuanian authorities received a suspected hoax security alert".

The plane landed safely at around 8.55am and passengers were to be transferred to Luton by coach when the airline was given the clearance to do so, the company added.

Flights were temporarily grounded and the runway closed for a short time, but has since re-opened.

Essex Police said officers were on the scene while inquiries into the incident continued.

A sonic boom was heard across Suffolk when the two jets took to the air.

An RAF spokesman said: "The RAF can confirm Quick Reaction Alert Typhoon aircraft were launched this morning from RAF Coningsby to intercept a civilian aircraft.

"The aircraft was safely escorted to Stansted Airport. The Typhoon aircraft were authorised to transit at supersonic speed for operational reasons; any inconvenience caused to local residents is regretted."

Stansted is one of the designated airports jets escort aircraft to if there is potentially a problem on board.