During the Gulf War, the passengers of British Airways Flight 149 were taken hostage by Iraqi security forces at Kuwait Airport. These passengers were kept hostage in several nearby hotels.
British Airways plane (File Photo)
British Airways’ cabin service director Clive Earthey worked for airlines in the 1990s. He got stuck in traffic on his way from home to work at Heathrow Airport. During this he heard the news and his worries increased. Actually, this news was related to the Gulf country Kuwait and his plane had to go there. During this, the Gulf War was going on between Kuwait and Iraq. So the danger was very high. It was told in the news that Iraqi soldiers have reached the border of Kuwait.
However, even after all this, Clive did not panic and on August 1, 1990, he boarded ‘Flight 149’ with 17 other crew members and 367 passengers and left for Kuala Lumpur. This flight was to stop in Kuwait, due to which the concern increased. However, he announced earlier in the plane that according to the government it is safe to go to Kuwait and the flight will be diverted if the situation worsens. However, just before take-off, a high-ranking member of the Kuwaiti royal family and nine to ten muscular people sat on the plane.
What was Flight 149?
This was the same flight 149, whose passengers were taken hostage by Iraqi security forces at the Kuwait airport. These passengers were kept hostage in several nearby hotels. During this, foreign guards kept a watch on them. Those held hostage were released after five months. At the same time, Flight 149 was later destroyed and the people who did so could not be identified yet. Indeed, a new book questions whether Saddam Hussein was gifted to the hostages of the flight during the Gulf War?
Airport was closed due to security reasons
Let us inform that Flight 149 took off at 7.04 pm. It was said that the situation at Kuwait Airport is normal. But it was not so. Most of the flights to Kuwait were returning as the airport was closed for security reasons. Iraqi tanks and army vehicles were present on the Kuwait border. At 3 a.m. Kuwaiti time on August 2, Charles Powell, the foreign policy adviser to the then British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, told him that Saddam Hussein had infiltrated Kuwait.
What is said in the book?
Stephen Davis, the author of the book, wrote that Flight 149 reached Kuwait City at 4.13 am and took the passengers hostage shortly thereafter. All these people were released after five months. Davis said he was tasked with getting to the bottom of the story. Davis writes that there was a dispute between Iraq and Kuwait over the oil fields. Apart from this, Saddam also had an eye on Saudi Arabia’s oil wells. In such a situation, some people were sent to Kuwait to prevent Iraq from invading Kuwait.
Those who were sent to Kuwait to prevent Saddam from infiltrating Kuwait, their job was to provide information about Iraqi army movements, fuel supply and military storage depots. So that they can be destroyed through airstrike. Flight 149 was chosen to send these people to Kuwait. As soon as the plane landed, these people immediately got off from it. However, the rest did not land. During this there was an explosion and the whole plane shook. After this, everyone immediately got off the plane and ran towards the terminal.
During this there was an explosion and then the Iraqi army reached the passengers and they were taken hostage. On the other hand hostages in Britain were getting worried families. At the same time, the British government said that all the hostages are being taken care of. The government said that this plane had reached Kuwait before the infiltration started and hence it got stuck there. There was a stir between the leaders in London and Washington. On the other hand, Saudi Arabia was also under threat of attack. By doing this, Saddam wanted to harm the economies of the western countries dependent on oil. However, later all the hostage passengers were released. But overall the question in this book is whether the British government had really put the people in danger?
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