Yemenia Flight 448

Featured Image: Wikimedia Commons

Yemenia Flight 448 was a scheduled domestic passenger flight between Sana’a International Airport to Hodeida International Airport in Yemen. The flight was operated by a Boeing 727 carrying 101 passengers and crew. The passengers also included a US Ambassador to Yemen at that time, as well as the Yemeni ambassador to the USA. The aircraft took off from Sana’a on the 23rd of January, 2001 uneventfully and was scheduled for a stopover at Taiz International Airport.

Fifteen minutes into the flight, a man armed with a small firearm hijacked the aircraft and demanded that the aircraft be taken to Baghdad, Iraq. He claimed he had explosives with him in his briefcase in addition to his gun. The flight crew convinced the hijacker that they had to divert to Djibouti. They made an emergency landing at Djibouti–Ambouli International Airport.

The flight crew somehow managed to overpower the hijacker. The flight engineer was grazed by a bullet during the action. All the other 100 occupants survived the incident without any harm.

The hijacker turned out to be a disgruntled unemployed Iraqi citizen. He was extradited to Yemen and sentenced to 15 years in prison.

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