Worst terrorist strikes--worldwide

compiled by Wm. Robert Johnston
last updated 18 May 2013


Deadliest terrorist strikes, worldwide *

* Includes attacks resulting in at least 100 fatalities.

datelocationkilledinjureddescription
11 Sep 2001United States29938900crashing of hijacked planes into World Trade Center, New York City, New York, Pentagon in Alexandria, Virginia, and site in Pennsylvania, USA
26-30 Jul 2009Maiduguri, Borno, Nigeria7800armed attack on city by Boko Karam
14 Aug 2007Iraq5201500multiple car bombings in Al-Adnaniyah and Al-Qataniyah
20 Aug 1978Abadan, Iran47710arson of theater
1-3 Sep 2004Beslan, North Ossetia, Russia372747hostage taking at school (includes 35 terrorists killed)
23 Jun 1985multiple3314mid-air bombings of Air India flight off Cork, Ireland, killing 329; bomb intended for second Air India flight exploded in Narita Airport, Japan, killing 2 and injuring 4
12 Mar 1993Mumbai (Bombay), India317140015 bombings throughout city
7 Aug 1998multiple3034954truck bomb explodes outside U.S. embassy in Nairobi, Kenya, destroying adjacent office building; 244 killed, 4,877 injured; within five minutes, a truck bomb explodes outside U.S. embassy in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania; 12 killed
23 Oct 1983Beirut, Lebanon301161simultaneous truck bombings of U.S. Marine and French barracks
22 Sep 1997Ben Talha, Algeria277?armed attack
30 Dec 1997Ami Moussa, Algeria272?armed attack
21 Dec 1988Lockerbie, Scotland, United Kingdom27012mid-air bombing of Pan Am flight over Lockerbie, Scotland
25 Nov 1940Haifa, British Palestine267172bombing and sinking of ship carrying Jewish immigrants
20 Nov-5 Dec 1979Mecca, Saudi Arabia240600hostage taking at Grand Mosque (includes 87 terrorists killed)
21 Feb 2004Uganda23960armed attack and arson at refugee camp
29 Aug 1997Algeria238?attacks at Sidi Moussa and Hais Rais
31 Oct 1999Atlantic Ocean, Massachusetts, United States2170intentional crash of Egypt Air flight off Nantucket Island by copilot
11 Jul 2006Mumbai, India209714seven bombings on commuter trains
12 Oct 2002Kuta, Indonesia202350car bombing outside nightclub
23 Nov 2006Baghdad, Iraq202260five car bombings and two mortar attacks in Sadr City, Baghdad
18 Apr 2007Baghdad, Iraq193197multiple bombings
11 Mar 2004Madrid, Spain1911876bombings of four trains
24 Dec 2008Doroma, Orientale, DR Congo1890armed attack on village
2 Mar 2004Iraq188652suicide bombings at shrines in Karbala and Kadhimiya
22 Apr 2013Baga, Nigeria18777Boko Karam attack on village
4 Jan 1998Algeria182?attacks at Had Chekala, Remka, and Ain Tarik, Algeria
14 Sep 2005Baghdad, Iraq182679multiple suicide bombings and shooting attacks
7 Jul 2007Armili, Iraq182270multiple suicide truck bombings in Armili and area, Iraq
20 Jan 2012Kano, Nigeria17850multiple bombings and gun attacks
26-29 Nov 2008Mumbai, India174370multiple shooting and grenade attacks and hostage takings (includes 9 terrorists killed)
19 Sep 1989Bilma, Niger1710mid-air bombing of French UTA flight near Bilma
23-26 Oct 2002Moscow, Russia170656hostage taking and attempted rescue in theater (includes 41 terrorists killed)
19 Apr 1995Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States169675truck bombing of federal building, causing partial collapse
16 Apr 1925Sophia, Bulgaria160500bombing by communist terrorists of Sveta Nedelya Cathedral during funeral; cathedral dome collapsed, killing mostly officials attending the funeral
25 Oct 2009Baghdad, Iraq155721two vehicle bombings at government buildings
27 Mar 2007Tal Afar, Ninewa, Iraq153351two truck bombings
10 Aug 2001Luanda, Angola152146attack on train south of Luanda
14 May 1985Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka15085armed attack on crowds
28 May 2010Khemasuli, West Bengal, India148180sabotage resulting in derailment of Jnaneswari express train and collision with second train
14-19 June 1995Budennovsk, Stavropol, Russia143435hostage taking at hospital and two failed rescue attempts
18 Oct 2007Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan141540bombing of motorcade for former prime minister Bhutto
3 Aug 1990Kathankudy, Sri Lanka14070armed attack at two mosques
3 Nov 1998Mitu, Columbia13830FARC rebels attack police barracks with rockets, killing police officers and 10 civilians
3 Feb 2007Baghdad, Iraq137334truck bombing in marketplace
6 Mar 2007Hilla, Babil, Iraq137310two suicide bombings and additional attacks
29 Mar 2007Iraq137251multiple bombings in Baghdad, Khalis, and Mahmudiya
28 Feb 2005Hilla, Babil, Iraq135130car bombing outside medical clinic
2 Oct 1990Guangzhou, PR China13249crash of hijacked PRC airliner
13 Sep 1999Moscow, Russia130150bombing of apartment building
8 Dec 2009Baghdad, Iraq127448five car bombings
18 Apr 1987Alut Oya, Sri Lanka12764Tamil Tiger roadway ambush of Sinhalese in five vehicles near Alut Oya
23 Nov 1996Moroni, Comoros12748crash of hijacked Ethiopian Air flight off Comoros during forced landing off shore
19 Aug 2002Khankala, Chechnya, Russia12714Mi-26 helicopter carrying Russian troops shot down by terrorist-fired missile shortly before landing; 115 killed immediately, 12 died of injuries; 21 survivors included 14 injured
29 Aug 2003Najaf, An-Najaf, Iraq125500car bombing outside mosque
5 Jan 2006Iraq124203bombings in Karbala, Ramadi, and Baghdad
13 Aug 1990Eravur, Sri Lanka12279armed attack at mosque
10 Jan 2013Pakistan120222bombings at security checkpoint, billiards hall, nearby street, and market in Quetta, and bombing at mosque in Mingora
28 Oct 2009Peshawar, Pakistan119213car bombing at marketplace
2 May 2002Bojaya, Choco, Columbia11980armed attack on village including bombing of church
27 Feb 2004Manila, Philippines1189bombing and fire on ferry near Manila
23 Jul 2012Iraq116299multiple bombings in several cities
29 Nov 1987Burma1150mid-air bombing of Korean Air flight near Burma
23 Sep 1983United Arab Emirates1120crash of Gulf Air flight following mid-air bombing over the UAE
10 May 2010Iraq111391multiple bombings in Hilla, Basra, al-Suwayra, Baghdad, Tarmiyah, Fallujah, Mosul, and Iskandariyah, and additional armed attacks in Baghdad
27 Nov 1989Bogota, Columbia110?mid-air bombing of Avianca flight in Bogota, killing all 107 aboard plus 3 on the ground
10 Oct 2008Orakzai, Pakistan110165truck bombing of anti-Taliban tribal meeting
1 Feb 2004Irbil, Irbil, Iraq109256two suicide bombings of political party offices
9 Sep 2012Iraq106423shooting and bombing attack near Baghdad; two car bombings in Amara
21 Apr 1987Columbo, Sri Lanka106295Tamil Tiger bombing of bus depot
10 Jul 2010Kakaghund, Pakistan106115two suicide bombings
22 Sep 1993Sukhumi, Georgia10626crash of airliner struck by missile
17 Feb 2008Kandahar, Kandahar, Afghanistan10595suicide bombing at dogfighting festival
19 Aug 2009Baghdad, Iraq104568multiple bombings at government sites
24 Jun 2004Iraq103324bombings in Mosul and Baghdad; armed attacks in Ramadi and Baquba
16 Oct 2006Habarana, Sri Lanka103150suicide bombing of military convoy near Habarana
11 Jan 1998Sidi Hamed, Algeria10370attack on movie theater and mosque
3-10 Jul 2007Islamabad, Pakistan10229hostage taking and army storming of mosque
22 Jan 2007Iraq101186bombings in Baghdad and Baquba
13 Dec 1921Bolgard, Bessarabia, Romania100?bombing of Siguranzia palace in Bolgard (Ograd?) in Bessarabia
16 Jul 2005Musayyib, Babil, Iraq100150suicide bombing in marketplace near gas tanker and mosque
4 Nov 2011Damaturu, Yobe, Nigeria100100bombings and shooting attacks on churches, police headquarters, government buildings, and banks
18 May 1973Chita, Siberia, USSR1000mid-air bombing of Aeroflot airliner over Siberia
4 Dec 1977Malaysia1000crash of hijacked Malaysian Boeing 747 airliner in Straits of Johore near Malaysia
6 Nov 1985Bogota, Columbia100?50 M-19 terrorists seize Palace of Justice in Bogota, Columbia; 12 judges killed, palace is stormed, fire results and kills all terrorists and additional hostages


Significant terrorist acts using unconventional weapons

datelocationkilledinjureddescription
6 Apr 2007Ramadi, Al-Anbar, Iraq3550suicide bombing with truck carrying chlorine tanks
15 May 2007Abu Sayda, Diyala, Iraq3250bombing at open air market involving chlorine release
6 Sep 1987Zamboanga City, Philippines19140water poisoning with pesticide at constabulary
21 Jan 1994Ormancik, Turkey16?attack with chemical grenades on village of Ormancik
28 Jan 2007Ramadi, Al-Anbar, Iraq160suicide bombing with dump truck carrying chlorine tank
20 Mar 1995Toyko, Japan125511sarin nerve gas attack in subway
20 Feb 2007Taji, Baghdad, Iraq9150bombing of chlorine tanker truck near restaurant
16 Mar 2007Al-Anbar, Iraq8352two suicide bombings in Falluja and one in Ramadi, all trucks carrying chlorine tanks resulting in chemical releases
8 Oct 2006Numaniyah, Wasit, Iraq7700possible poisoning of food
27 Jun 1994Matsumoto, Nagano, Japan7270sarin nerve gas attack, attributed to Aum Shinrikyo
21 Feb 2007Baghdad, Iraq673explosion of car bomb carrying chlorine tanks
30 Apr 2007Ramadi, Al-Anbar, Iraq610explosion of chlorine tanker near restaurant
9 Oct 2001Washington, DC, United States47anthrax-laced letters mailed to Washington, DC
19 Feb 2007Ramadi, Al-Anbar, Iraq216suicide bombing with car carrying chlorine tanks
31 Mar 2012Esfandi, Ghazni, Afghanistan20acid attack on children
18 Sep 2001West Palm Beach, Florida, United States110anthrax-laced letters mailed to West Palm Beach, Florida, USA, and New York City, New York, USA
25 Apr 2007Baghdad, Iraq12truck bombing involving chlorine
19 Apr 1946Nuremberg, FR Germany02283cyanide poisoning of bread for SS prisoners in Camp Stalag 13 near Nuremberg
9-19 Sep 1984The Dalles, Oregon, United States0751salmonella poisoning in restaurants by followers of Bhadwan Shree Rajneesh
19 Apr 1995Yokohama, Japan0272tear gas attack
2 Jul 2012Sheberghan, Jawzjan, Afghanistan0255gas poisoning at girls' school
17 Apr 2012Rustaq, Takhar, Afghanistan0171water poisoning at girls' school
28 May 2012Takhar, Afghanistan0124gas poisoning at girls' school
22 Jun 2012Sar-e-Pul, Afghanistan0118gas poisoning at girls' school
12 May 2009Kunduz, Afghanistan0104gas poisoning at girls' school
Jul 2012Jawzjan, Afghanistan0100gas poisoning at girls' school


Terrorist attacks producing high numbers of non-fatal injuries*

* Includes attacks resulting in 300 or more injuries apart from fatalities. Note than these figures are not as consistently defined by reporting authorities.

datelocationkilledinjureddescription
11 Sep 2001United States29938900crashing of hijacked planes into World Trade Center, New York City, New York, Pentagon in Alexandria, Virginia, and site in Pennsylvania, USA
20 Mar 1995Toyko, Japan125511sarin nerve gas attack in subway
7 Aug 1998multiple3034954truck bomb explodes outside U.S. embassy in Nairobi, Kenya, destroying adjacent office building; 244 killed, 4,877 injured; within five minutes, a truck bomb explodes outside U.S. embassy in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania; 12 killed
19 Apr 1946Nuremberg, FR Germany02283cyanide poisoning of bread for SS prisoners in Camp Stalag 13 near Nuremberg
11 Mar 2004Madrid, Spain1911876bombings of four trains
14 Aug 2007Iraq5201500multiple car bombings in Al-Adnaniyah and Al-Qataniyah
12 Mar 1993Mumbai (Bombay), India317140015 bombings throughout city
31 Jan 1996Columbo, Sri Lanka911400suicide truck bombing of Central Bank
26 Feb 1993New York City, New York, United States61040truck bombing in garage of World Trade Center
6 Dec 1989Bogota, Columbia521000truck bombing at federal police building in Bogota
7 Jul 2005London, England, United Kingdom56784bombings of three subway trains and one bus
9-19 Sep 1984The Dalles, Oregon, United States0751salmonella poisoning in restaurants by followers of Bhadwan Shree Rajneesh
1-3 Sep 2004Beslan, North Ossetia, Russia372747hostage taking at school (includes 35 terrorists killed)
25 Oct 2009Baghdad, Iraq155721two vehicle bombings at government buildings
11 Jul 2006Mumbai, India209714seven bombings on commuter trains
1 Oct 1982Tehran, Iran60700truck bombing in public square
8 Oct 2006Numaniyah, Wasit, Iraq7700possible poisoning of food
14 Sep 2005Baghdad, Iraq182679multiple suicide bombings and shooting attacks
19 Apr 1995Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States169675truck bombing of federal building, causing partial collapse
23-26 Oct 2002Moscow, Russia170656hostage taking and attempted rescue in theater (includes 41 terrorists killed)
2 Mar 2004Iraq188652suicide bombings at shrines in Karbala and Kadhimiya
27 Dec 2002Grozny, Chechnya, Russia71640two car bombings outside government house
20 Nov-5 Dec 1979Mecca, Saudi Arabia240600hostage taking at Grand Mosque (includes 87 terrorists killed)
17 Jul 1996Sri Lanka70600bombing of train
19 Aug 2009Baghdad, Iraq104568multiple bombings at government sites
18 Oct 2007Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan141540bombing of motorcade for former prime minister Bhutto
15 Aug 1998Omagh, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom29530two car bombings, with telephoned warning directing evacuees towards one bomb
26 Jun 1996Dhahran, Saudi Arabia19515truck bombing at U.S. military housing complex near Dhahran
16 Apr 1925Sophia, Bulgaria160500bombing by communist terrorists of Sveta Nedelya Cathedral during funeral; cathedral dome collapsed, killing mostly officials attending the funeral
29 Aug 2003Najaf, An-Najaf, Iraq125500car bombing outside mosque
16 Sep 1999Volgodonsk, Rostove, Russia17480car bombing
30 Oct 2008Assam, India84470twelve bombings in Guwahati, Kokrajhar, Barpeta Road, and Bongaigaon
8 Dec 2009Baghdad, Iraq127448five car bombings
14-19 June 1995Budennovsk, Stavropol, Russia143435hostage taking at hospital and two failed rescue attempts
20 Nov 2003Istanbul, Turkey30400suicide bombings of British consulate and bank
10 May 2010Iraq111391multiple bombings in Hilla, Basra, al-Suwayra, Baghdad, Tarmiyah, Fallujah, Mosul, and Iskandariyah, and additional armed attacks in Baghdad
26-29 Nov 2008Mumbai, India174370multiple shooting and grenade attacks and hostage takings (includes 9 terrorists killed)
16 Mar 2007Al-Anbar, Iraq8352two suicide bombings in Falluja and one in Ramadi, all trucks carrying chlorine tanks resulting in chemical releases
27 Mar 2007Tal Afar, Ninewa, Iraq153351two truck bombings
12 Oct 2002Kuta, Indonesia202350car bombing outside nightclub
3 Feb 2007Baghdad, Iraq137334truck bombing in marketplace
24 Jun 2004Iraq103324bombings in Mosul and Baghdad; armed attacks in Ramadi and Baquba
26 Sep 1980Munich, FR Germany13312Wehrsportsgruppe Neo-Nazi bomber kills himself and 12 others, injures 312
6 Mar 2007Hilla, Babil, Iraq137310two suicide bombings and additional attacks
2 Aug 1980Bologna, Italy85300Armed Revolutionary Nuclei bomb at railway station
1 Oct 1981Beirut, Lebanon83300car bombing by FLP of PLO office
14 Jul 1987Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan72300twin car bombs and two other bombs in shopping area
15 Dec 1976Baghdad, Iraq40300bombing at airport
16 Sep 1920New York City, New York, United States38300bomb in horse-drawn wagon exploded near Morgan bank in lower Manhattan
5 Mar 1998Columbo, Sri Lanka32300bombing of bus


Updated from "Selected Terrorist Incidents: U.S. and Abroad," version 5

Sources:


© 2000-2012, 2013 by Wm. Robert Johnston.
Last modified 18 May 2013.
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