List of hijackings of Turkish airplanes

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The list of hijackings of Turkish airplanes is a listing of hijackings or hijacking attempts occurred on Turkish aircraft since the first ever incident in 1972.[1]

  • May 3, 1972 – A DC-9 airplane of Turkish Airlines (THY) named Boğaziçi on the way from Ankara to Istanbul was hijacked by four Turkish leftist militants to Sofia, Bulgaria. Among the passengers was Ömer İnönü, son of the former President of Turkey İsmet İnönü. The hijackers, Sefer Şimşek, Yaşar Aydın, Mehmet Yılbaz and Aynullah Akça demanded the release of Deniz Gezmiş and his comrades from prison, all members of the illegal communist organization People's Liberation Army of Turkey (THKO) sentenced to death penalty and were right before execution. After landing in Sofia, they handed over the aircraft to the Bulgarian authorities and applied for political asylum.
  • October 22, 1972 – THY aircraft Truva on a scheduled domestic flight from Istanbul to Ankara was hijacked and diverted to Sofia by another four members of THKO, Hacı Özdemir, Derviş Elmacıoğlu, Yücel Bozkurt and Ahmet Maden. Landed in Sofia, the hijackers handed over the airplane to the Bulgarian authorities and applied for political asylum.
  • May 1, 1976 – Zeki Ejder, a Turkish citizen working in France, attempted to hijack the a DC-10 aircraft named İzmir of Turkish Airlines bound to Istanbul from Paris in order to land it in Marseille. The hijacker could be persuaded and the airliner returned safely to Charles De Gaulle Airport in Paris.
  • March 19, 1977 – Turkish Airlines aircraft with 173 passengers on board flying from Diyarbakır to Ankara was hijacked by two underaged hijackers armed with hand guns to Beirut, Lebanon. İsmail Açan and Hanefi Güzel, who wanted to go to Palestine, surrendered with the initiative of Lebanon's Prime Minister Selim al-Hoss.
  • October 13, 1980 – The Turkish Airlines Boeing 727 type aircraft Diyarbakır was hijacked on the flight from Munich, Germany to Ankara via Istanbul by four radical Islamist miitants. The hijackers were arrested in Diyarbakır as the aircraft landed for refuelling.
  • May 24, 1981 – Four Turkish leftist militants hijacked the Turkish Airlines DC-9 aircraft Haliç on a domestic flight from Istanbul to Ankara and demanded to go to Burgas, Bulgaria. As two of the hijackers left the airliner for a while after landing, the two others were overwhelmed by the passengers.
  • April 15, 1983 – Turkish Airlines aircraft Ankara, flying from Istanbul to İzmir with 6 crew and 107 passengers on board, was hijacked to Athens, Greece by Mehmet Kalkan, who was believed to be a psychopathic.
  • June 28, 1985 – Turkish citizen Yusuf Örer, who was deported from Germany, attempted to hijack the Turkish Airlines aircraft Kars on the flight from Frankfurt, Germany to Istanbul for landing in Vienna, Austria. Captain pilot and he flight engineer overwhelmed him with the help of passengers immediately after the attempt.
  • February 24, 1998 – Turkish Airlines aircraft Gaziantep of type RJ 100 bound for Ankara from Adana with 63 passengers and 5 crew on board was hijacked by Mehmet Dağ (36) to Diyarbakır. The hijacker, stating he had a bomb inside the teddy bear in his hand, wanted to divert the airliner to Iran. The passengers overwhelmed him.[2]
  • March 30, 1998 – Cyprus Turkish Airlines aircraft on the way from Nicosia to Ankara was hijacked by Mehmet Ertürk, who had in his hand a lighter in the form of a hand grenade. The airliner landed in Ankara, and the hijacker was arrested.
  • September 14, 1998 – An Airbus of Turkish Airlines, departed from Ankara for Istanbul, was hijacked by İhsan Akyüz, who was armed with a toy pistol. Following the forced landing in Trabzon, the hijacker surrendered.
  • October 29, 1998 – Turkish Airlines Flight 487 on a Boeing 737 named Ayvalık en route from Adana to Istanbul was hijacked by a PKK terrorist on the Republic Day. The hijacker, armed with a pistol and a hand grenade demanded to fly to Zurich, Switzerland via Sofia in Bulgaria.[3]
  • March 28, 2003 – Turkish Airlines aircraft Ergene on the way from Ankara to Istanbul was hijacked and forced to land in Athens, Greece. The Turkish citizen hijacker Özgür Genç surrendered.
  • April 10, 2007 – Pegasus Airlines aircraft on the way from Diyarbakr to Istanbul was hijacked by Mehmet Gökşingöl and was forced to land at Esenboğa Airport in Ankara. Security forces overwhelmed the hijacker some time later.
  • August 18, 2007 – A Palestinian and a Turkish citizen hijacked a MD-83 type aircraft of Atlasjet leased to World Focus Airlines on the flight KK 1011 from Nicosia to Istanbul. The hijackers, armed with a knife and fake plastic bomb, tried unsuccessfully to enter the cockpit, demanded to fly to Teheran, Iran. The aircraft with 6 crew and 136 passengers landed in Antalya for refuelling. The hijackers, a Syrian passport holder Palestinian, Mommen Abdül Aziz Talik (25), and a Turkish student in Cyprus, Mehmet Reşat Öz (27), released the children and the women on board. By this opportunity, the pilots and most of the passengers escaped by jumping from the aircraft. The hijackers held a few passengers and flight attendants hostage, but surrendered five hours later.[4]
  • January 5, 2011 – Turkish Airlines Flight 1754, flying from Oslo to Istanbul, was in Bulgarian airspace when, allegedly, an unsuccessful attempt was made to hijack it. The suspect allegedly said that he had a bomb and that he would blow up the aircraft unless the plane returned to Norway. Some passengers overpowered the hijacker and the flight safely landed at Atatürk International Airport at 9:30 p.m after the pilot notified emergency service. All 60 passengers and seven crew got off the aircraft; none were injured during the incident. The suspect was arrested. "Turkish Airlines hijack attempt foiled by passengers", Hürriyet, January 5, 2011[5]

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