Zero Hour

9:55pm Sunday, August 15 on Prime

Documentary Series

Shoot-Out In Marseilles

Tonight’s episode of Zero Hour chronicles the final 60 minutes of a two-day stand-off between Algerian hijackers and France’s counter terrorist unit. Air France flight 8969 had first been hijacked in Algiers and was then permitted by Algerian authorities to fly to Marseilles. Here the ordeal is nearing its 54th hour. On December 26 1994, four hijackers of the extreme Islamist group the GIA, armed with machine guns, explosives and grenades, hold captive one hundred and seventy one terrified passengers.

Their immediate demands are for water and fuel to enable them to fly on to Paris where they want to hold a press conference to broadcast their demands to the world. Concealed around the airport perimeter, an elite team of French Special Forces awaits the order to storm the plane. The hijackers’ final ultimatum is just minutes from reaching its deadline. If their demands are not met, their deadly arsenal is enough to blow up the plane and kill everyone on board. As the siege nears the end of its final hour, one of the most violent and remarkable rescue operations in hijack history is about to unfold.

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