Argentina, Paraguay probe grounded 747 for terrorism ties

Home Latest Posts Argentina, Paraguay probe grounded 747 for terrorism ties
Argentina, Paraguay probe grounded 747 for terrorism ties
Argentina, Paraguay probe grounded 747 for terrorism ties

Buenos Aires, Argentina (AFP) – Authorities in Argentina and Paraguay have been making an attempt to make clear the thriller that has surrounded a cargo aircraft with Iranian and Venezuelan crew outdoors Buenos Aires for greater than two weeks.

Prosecutors within the two South American international locations have launched investigations to seek out out whether or not the crew members – 14 Venezuelans and 5 Iranians – had any hyperlinks to worldwide terrorism or different criminality.

Cecilia Encardona, the prosecutor main the case in Argentina, is focusing her investigations on the Iranian pilot, Gholamreza Ghasemi, and his doable ties to worldwide terrorism.

The FBI stated in a report back to Argentine federal choose Federico Villina, who’s in control of the case, that Ghasemi is the CEO of Qeshm Fars Air, which the US Treasury says supplies materials assist to the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ Quds Pressure and Iran Air. Mahan Air, in response to a doc launched by Encardona’s workplace this week.

Within the doc, Encardona stated that in the course of the preliminary investigation of the aircraft, “several implications emerged that make it necessary to move the investigation forward” with Kasumi, the remainder of the cabin crew and its cargo.

Encardirona went on to say that the “irregular conditions” surrounding the aircraft created the necessity to examine “whether the real purpose of the plane’s arrival in our country was to exclusively transport auto parts” or whether or not it was “preparing to provide goods or funds that could be used for or finance terrorist activity.” or arrange it.

The plane is operated by Venezuela’s state-owned Amtrasur Line, a subsidiary of Conviasa, which is topic to US sanctions.

Earlier than it was offered to Emtrasur a 12 months in the past, the aircraft was owned by Iran’s Mahan Air, which the US authorities has sanctioned for aiding the Quds Pressure and terrorist actions.

Encardona stated an investigation now should decide whether or not Mahan Air continues to affiliate with the Boeing 747-300.

Mahan Air has publicly denied any reference to the aircraft and Venezuela has demanded the Argentine authorities launch it.

The aircraft was carrying a cargo of various Argentine auto elements corporations that had been loaded in Mexico earlier than stopping in Caracas and arriving in Argentina on June 6.

The aircraft has been parked within the hangar in Ezeiza outdoors Buenos Aires since June 8, when Argentine authorities confiscated the passports of the crew members.

Prosecutor Sandra Quines stated the crew was additionally beneath investigation in Paraguay, the place the aircraft landed final month. The investigation was opened after Rene Fernandez, the previous prosecutor who heads Paraguay’s Nationwide Anti-Corruption Secretariat, referred to as for an investigation into the aircraft that had spent three days in Ciudad del Este, close to the border with Argentina.

Fernandez advised a neighborhood tv community that there have been suspicions that the aircraft’s cargo was a “facade” that hid the true purpose for its time in Paraguay.

Esteban Aquino, the top of Paraguay’s intelligence company, advised an Argentine radio station on Monday that they had been notably involved once they realized that the aircraft had turned off its transponder in a number of elements of its flights.

The unusually giant cabin crew aroused suspicion in Paraguay, however solely after the aircraft left the nation to move cigarettes to Aruba did officers know that it “belonged to an Iranian company that has been suspended due to sanctions by the US Treasury,” Paraguay’s Inside Minister Federico Gonzalez stated earlier. from this month.

The Israeli embassy in Uruguay expressed “concern” Wednesday concerning the aircraft, which “was used until recently by Iran’s Mahan Air.”

The embassy stated in a press assertion that some Iranian crew members had been “directly involved in smuggling weapons to Syria and the Lebanese terrorist organization Hezbollah.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.