Monday, 4 November 2013

Google Earth captures picture of world's most remote memorial: Incredible picture of 200ft African desert memorial for the 170 victims of a 1989 plane crash

The least accessible memorial in the world, built to remember 170 people who died when a plane blew up over the Sahara desert in 1989, can be seen on Google Earth and Google Maps.

UTA Flight 772 was flying from Brazzaville in the Republic of Congo to Paris CDG Airport in France on September 19, 1989, when a bomb went off in the luggage compartment.

The blast resulted in the plane tearing apart mid-air, killing everyone on board - including Bonnie Barnes Pugh, wife of the U.S. Ambassador to Chad.

Evidence traced the bomb back to Libya.

The Libyan motive was said to be revenge on the French government for supporting Chad in a border dispute with Libya.

Eventually a special court in Paris found six Libyans guilty. They were not in court themselves because Libya refused to hand them over.

Despite 170 people losing their lives, the event became known as the forgotten flight.

But 18-years later, families of those who perished gathered at the crash site where they built a memorial to remember their loved ones.

Due to the remoteness of desert location, pieces of the plane were still at the site when the families arrived.

The memorial itself was created by Les Familles de l’Attentat du DC-10 d’UTA, an association of the victims’ families along with the help of local inhabitants.

Despite being one of the most inaccessible places on the planet, the memorial was built by hand and was created using dark stones which created a 200ft diameter circle.

The stones had to be transported more than 70miles across the desert for the memorial which took two months to build in May and June 2007.

One hundred and seventy broken mirrors were places around the memorial to represent each victim of the crash.

The main part of the memorial is actually held up by the starboard wing of the aircraft which was transported from 10 miles away. It had to be dug up and emptied of sand.

It was partly funded by compensation worth £106million which was paid out by the Libyan government. The memorial can now be seen on Google Earth and Google Maps.

Monday 04 November 2013


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