Fast Facts: Chronology of Hijackings in Turkey

A chronology of recent hijackings and attempted hijackings of Turkish planes, most by people falsely claiming to be carrying arms or explosives:

August 18, 2007 — Two hijackers claiming to be carrying a bomb hijack a Turkish passenger plane heading from northern Cyprus to Istanbul. The hijackers ask that the plane be diverted to Iran but the pilots lands the plane at Antalya airport, near Turkey's Mediterranean coast.

April 10, 2007 — A Turkish man claiming to be carrying an explosive device threatens to blow up a private Pegasus airline plane traveling from the predominantly Kurdish city of Diyarbakir to Istanbul unless the flight is diverted to Iran. Pilots land the plane at Ankara airport, where the man gives himself up and is arrested.

Oct. 3, 2006 — A Turkish army deserter, claiming to have bombs strapped to his body, hijacks a Turkish Airlines plane during a flight from Tirana, Albania, to Istanbul. The hijacker — who had no bombs — releases all passengers unharmed after fighter jets escorted the aircraft to an Italian airport. The man was seeking asylum because he feared persecution in his Muslim homeland after his conversion to Christianity and wanted Pope Benedict XVI's protection.

March 29, 2003 — A Turkish man uses candles disguised as dynamite to hijack a Turkish Airlines flight after it takes off from Istanbul, so he can visit his girlfriend in Germany. The plane is diverted to Athens. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan persuades him to release the 202 passengers on board.

Feb. 7, 2003 — A passenger claiming to have dynamite sticks holds two flight attendants hostage aboard a plane at Istanbul airport before police storm the aircraft and free them. The sticks turned out to be candles.

Oct. 29, 1998 — Security forces storm a plane on the tarmac of Ankara airport, and shoot and kill a Kurdish rebel hijacker armed with a hand grenade who holds 38 people hostage aboard a Turkish Airlines plane. The man hijacks the plane to protest Turkey's fight against separatist Kurdish rebels in the southeast of the country. No passenger is injured.

Sept. 14, 1998 — An Islamic militant uses a toy gun to hijack a Turkish Airlines plane to the Black Sea port of Trabzon, to protest a ban on Islamic-style head coverings at Turkey's universities and the war in Chechnya. Authorities convince him to surrender and release all 76 passengers.

Feb. 24, 1998 — A man carrying a teddy bear he claims is stuffed with explosives commandeers a Turkish Airlines flight from Adana, in southern Turkey, to Ankara, demanding to be flown to Iran. The man is overpowered by other passengers. There were no explosives.