El Al Boeing 787 Escorted Over Europe By Fighter Jets
El Al Boeing 787 Escorted Over Europe By Fighter Jets

EL AL Boeing 787 Escorted by Fighter Jets with Suspected Bomb on Board

On 30th April an EL AL Boeing 787-9 was escorted by fighter jets over Spain, Italy, Greece, Cyprus and Israel, due to a suspected bomb being planted onboard.

The 2.5 year old aircraft, with registration 4X-EDH and performing flight LY2 from New York John F. Kennedy International Airport, USA to Tel Aviv Israel, was en-route over northern Spain when the crew advised air traffic control that they suspected a bomb had been planted on the aircraft.

Once it was accepted as a serious security concern, NATO decided to dispatch fighter aircraft; these fighters then intercepted and escorted the Boeing as it passed over various Mediterranean countries. At the Spanish-Italian airspace boundary, Italian fighter aircraft took over escort duty until the Boeing entered Greek airspace; at this point, according to Greek Reporter, two pairs of Greek General Dynamics F-16 ‘Fighting Falcon’ jets, based in Araxos and Kasteli, approached the aircraft while it was over Greek airspace. Israeli fighter aircraft awaited the aircraft in Cyprus airspace, proceeding to escort the aircraft until it finally landed in Tel Aviv.

a map of europe with a route

Four hours after the first alert the 787 landed safely at Tel Aviv Ben Gurion Airport. According to FlightRadar24 the aircraft is still on the ground 24 hours after the incident

The Israeli flagship carrier is the only commercial airline to equip its planes with missile defence systems, to protect them against surface-to-air missiles and is considered one of the world’s most secure airlines; this is in part thanks to its stringent security procedures, both on the ground and onboard their aircraft.

Cover Photo: Boeing