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Hijacking description
Last updated: 23 October 2017
Status:
Date:Saturday 16 September 2000
Type:Silhouette image of generic BN2P model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Britten-Norman BN-2A-8 Islander
Operator:Solomon Airlines
Registration: H4-AAH
C/n / msn: 75
First flight: 1969-05-17 (31 years 4 months)
Engines: 2 Lycoming O-540-E4C5
Crew:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 1
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 1
Airplane damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:Mbambanakira Airport (MBU) (   Solomon Islands)
Phase: Standing (STD)
Nature:Unknown
Departure airport:?
Destination airport:Mbambanakira Airport (MBU/AGGI), Solomon Islands
Narrative:
A Britten-Norman Islander aircraft and its pilot were seized by a faction of the Isatabu Freedom Movement (IFM) militia group. The incident happened following the plane's scheduled landing at an isolated airstrip in Babanakira on the island of Guadalcanal. The IFM faction demanded two million Solomon dollars for the pilot's release and set a deadline of September 19. The IFM also threatened to kill the pilot and blow up the aircraft if the demand was not met. An IFM spokesman said that the hijacking was a result of dissatisfaction over the failure of the deputy prime minister to fulfill the many promises he had made. The commandeering took place just three days after the Solomon Islands government had paid another militia group, the Malaita Eagle Force (MEF), $180,000 (Australian). The payment was to encourage the MEF to return to their villages on Malaita island as part of peace talks between the two militia groups.
The pilot of the commandeered plane was subsequently released unharmed by the rebels on October 6 without the ransom having been paid. The plane was believed to have been hidden in the dense jungle and was not recovered.
This commandeering is a politically-motivated incident.

Sources:
» Criminal Acts Against Civil Aviation 2000 / FAA, Office of Civil Aviation Security


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This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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