1 Nov 2003

Aircraft makes emergency landing at airport in American Samoa

9:44 am on 1 November 2003

An inter-island plane carrying the Governor of American Samoa suffered mechanical problems and was forced to dump fuel before an emergency landing at Pago Pago International Airport.

The charter plane was returning to Pago Pago after a sightseeing excursion to the Manu'a Island group when there were landing gear problems.

The plane, which was also carrying five Aloha Airline officials, landed safely at the airport, which was closed for an hour during the emergency.

Officials say the plane is now being examined to determine the cause of the problem.

Meanwhile a newspaper official at Samoa News claims airport security officers confiscated a camera from a press photographer and removed pictures of the landing.

A newspaper official says the company plans to lodge an official complaint with the territorial government over media censorship.