Unlawful Interference Boeing 720-060B , Friday 8 December 1972
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Date:Friday 8 December 1972
Time:
Type:Silhouette image of generic B720 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Boeing 720-060B
Owner/operator:Ethiopian Airlines
Registration:
MSN:
Fatalities:Fatalities: 6 / Occupants: 103
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial, repaired
Category:Unlawful Interference
Location:Addis Ababa-Haile Selassie I International Airport (ADD) -   Ethiopia
Phase: En route
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Addis Ababa-Haile Selassie I International Airport (ADD/HAAB)
Destination airport:Asmara International Airport (ASM/HAAY)
Narrative:
Ethiopian Airlines Flight 708 was an international service from Addis Ababa (ADD) to Asmara, Athens, Rome and Paris. Some 13 minutes after departure five men and two women stood up, pulled out guns and began shouting orders in Amharic. Security guards opened fire and killed six of the hijackers. The seventh was injured. During the shooting one of the hijackers activated a grenade. One of the passengers picked up the grenade and lobbed it toward an unoccupied part of the passenger cabin. The grenade exploded, damaging an inboard engine as well as the plane's rudder controls. Smoke filled the cabin. The pilot returned to Addis Ababa for an emergency landing.
The hijackers were members of the Eritrean Liberation Front.

Sources:

Brief and Bloody (Time, Dec. 18, 1972)
Aircraft hijackings and other criminal acts against civil aviation : statistics and narrative reports / FAA

Statistics

  • 103rd worst accident in 1972
  • 4th worst accident of this aircraft type
  • 3rd worst accident of this aircraft type at the time

Revision history:

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