On January 16, 2017, a Boeing 747-400 belonging to ACT Airlines en route from Hong Kong to Istanbul was scheduled to land at Manas International Airport in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Due to thick fog and a possible mistake by the aircraft’s pilot, the plane crashed in the Dacha-Su residential area some two kilometres from the airport. Thirty-two residential houses were destroyed and four crew members and 39 passengers, among them 17 children were killed. Dozens of people were hospitalised with severe injuries.
At that time, the presidents of many countries expressed their condolences to the people of Kyrgyzstan.
An inspection of the crash site revealed that the plane was carrying 85 tonnes of smartphones and tablets of which there was no documentation and that the owners didn’t intend to declare. Almost a year later and the owners have failed to show up in Kyrgyzstan or in Turkey, a fact confirmed by Kyrgyzstan’s Minister of Transport, Zhamshitbek Kalilov.
With the anniversary of the tragedy fast approaching, questions concerning who was responsible for the cargo and why it had no documentation remain unanswered.