Civilian Airliner shootdown incidents
In the history of civilian airliner (commercial aviation),there have been many airliner shootdown incidents which have been caused intentionally or by accident.
This is a chronologically ordered list meant to document instances where airliners have been brought down by gunfire or missile attacks.
1962 Aeroflot Flight 902
Aeroflot Flight 902 was a flight on scheduled domestic service from Khabarovsk to Moscow. On 30 June 1962, its wreckage was found 28 km (17 mi) east of Krasnoyarsk airport, in flat terrain. There were no survivors. An entry hole, with signs of fire damage on the cabin side of the fuselage, was consistent with that which could be caused by an anti-aircraft missile, and there was an unofficial confirmation that an anti-aircraft missile had gone astray during an air defense exercise in the area.
1973 Libyan Arab Airlines Flight 114
Libyan Airlines Flight 114 was a regularly scheduled flight from Tripoli, Libya, via Benghazi to Cairo. At 10:30 on 21 February 1973, the Boeing 727 left Tripoli, but became lost due to a combination of bad weather and equipment failure over northern Egypt around 13:44 (local time). It entered Israeli-controlled airspace over the Sinai Peninsula, was intercepted by two Israeli F-4 Phantom II fighters, refused to land, and was shot down. Of the 113 people on board, five survived, including the co-pilot.
1978 Korean Air Lines Flight 902
Korean Air Lines Flight 902 (KAL902, KE902) was a civilian Boeing 707 airliner shot down by Soviet Sukhoi Su-15 fighters on 20 April 1978, near Murmansk, Soviet Union, after it violated Soviet airspace and failed to respond to Soviet interceptors. Two passengers died in the incident. 107 passengers and crew survived after the plane made an emergency landing on a frozen lake.
1983 Korean Air Lines Flight 007
Korean Air Lines Flight 007, also known as KAL 007 or KE007, was a Korean Air Lines Boeing 747 civilian airliner shot down by a Soviet Su-15TM interceptor on 1 September 1983, near Moneron Island just west of Sakhalin Island. 269 passengers and crew, including US congressman Larry McDonald, were aboard KAL 007; there were no survivors. An official investigation concluded that the course deviation was likely caused by pilot error in configuring the air navigation system.
1988 Iran Air Flight 655
A missile departs the forward launcher of Vincennes during a 1987 exercise. The forward launcher was also used in the downing of Iran Air 655.
Iran Air Flight 655 (IR655) was a commercial flight operated by Iran Air that regularly flew from Bandar Abbas, Iran to Dubai, UAE. On 3 July 1988, toward the end of the Iran–Iraq War, the aircraft was shot down by the U.S. Navy guided missile cruiser USS Vincennes when it fired a RIM-66 Standard surface-to-air missile. The airplane was destroyed between Bandar Abbas and Dubai; all 290 passengers and crew died. USS Vincennes was in Iranian waters at the time of the attack. IR655, an Airbus A300 on an ascending flight path, was allegedly misidentified as a descending Iranian F-14.
1993 Transair Georgian Airline shootdowns
In September 1993, three airliners belonging to Transair Georgia were shot down by missiles and gunfire in Sukhumi, Abkhazia, Georgia. The first, a Tupolev Tu-134, was shot down on 21 September 1993 by a missile during landing approach. The second plane, a Tupolev Tu-154, was shot down a day later also during approach. A third one was shelled and destroyed on the ground, while passengers were boarding.
2001 Siberia Airlines Flight 1812
On 4 October 2001, Siberian Airlines Flight 1812, a Tupolev Tu-154, crashed over the Black Sea en route from Tel Aviv, Israel to Novosibirsk, Russia. Although the immediate suspicion was of a terrorist attack, American sources proved that the plane was hit by a S-200 surface-to-air missile, fired from the Crimea peninsula during a Ukrainian military exercise, and this was confirmed by the Moscow-based Interstate Aviation Committee. All on board (66 passengers and 12 crew) died. The President of Ukraine Leonid Kuchma and several high commanders of the military expressed their condolences to the relatives of the victims. The Ukrainian Government paid out $200,000 in compensation to the families of every passenger and crew who died when the plane crashed. They paid out a total of $15 million in compensation for the accident.
2003 Baghdad DHL attempted shootdown incident
Shortly after takeoff from Baghdad on 22 November 2003, an Airbus A300-200F cargo plane registered OO-DLL, was struck on the left wing by a surface-to-air missile whilst en route to Muharraq, Bahrain. The aircraft lost all hydraulic control meaning the crew had to use engine thrust control to maneuver the plane. Despite no controls, a high landing speed and a damaged left wing, the plane touched down at Baghdad airport. Seconds after touch down OO-DLL went off runway due to lack of controls. All 3 people on board survived, but due to unexploded bombs still being around the airport, the plane’s position was last reported in 2011 as still being at Baghdad airport.
2007 Mogadishu TransAVIAexport Airlines Il-76 crash
On 23 March 2007, a TransAVIAexport Airlines Ilyushin Il-76 airplane crashed in outskirts of Mogadishu, Somalia, during the 2007 Battle of Mogadishu. Witnesses, including a Shabelle reporter, claim they saw the plane shot down, and Belarus has initiated an anti-terrorist investigation, but Somalia insists the crash was accidental. All 11 Belarusian civilians on board died.
2020 Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752
On 8 January 2020, Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 was shot down by Iran’s Armed Forces while taking off from Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport, killing all 176 people on board. After initially denying responsibility, Iran admitted on 11 January 2020 that the plane was unintentionally shot down when it was mistaken for a hostile target as it turned towards a “sensitive site” of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.