Ballynure couple escape Palestinian terror ordeal

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A couple from Ballynure had a lucky escape from Palestinian militants in October 1985.

Noel and Susan Hall from the village, decided to go on an excursion to the Egyptian pyramids, shortly before the cruise ship they were travelling on was taken over by Palestinian gunmen.

The militants were demanding the release of 50 jailed guerrillas, who were being held in Israel. They threatened to blow the cruise ship up if their demand was not met.

The couples parent’s were “worried sick” when news of the incident broke.

They believed that their children were on the cruise ship at the time of it being taken over.

“We are glad that Noel had wanted to see the pyramids, or they may have been on the cruise ship at the time. We had reservations when we heard that the cruise was going to be travelling in this area. A boat had never been attacked before, but there is always a chance,” they said.

The drama ended when the gunmen were given a guarantee of freedom, and were handed over to the PLO by the Egyptian authorities.

A 69-year-old American was killed by the militants during the 52 hour siege.