|Ambassador criticizes Iraq for grounding Syria-bound Iranian plane||
TEHRAN – The Iranian ambassador to Baghdad, Hassan Danaeifar, has criticized Iraq for grounding and searching an Iranian plane which was bound for Syria to check for weapons allegedly being shipped to Syria.
According to the Middle East News Agency, authorities in Iraq forced a Damascus-bound flight coming from the Iranian capital to land in Baghdad for security checks on August 14.
The Boeing cargo plane, en route to Syria from Tehran, was stopped for checks but only medical supplies and humanitarian aid were found, Iraqi Transportation Minister Karim al-Nouri said in a statement on Monday, according to the report.
Speaking to the Mehr News Agency on Saturday, Ambassador Danaeifar said, “Iraq’s decision to ground the Iranian aircraft runs contrary to relations between the two countries.”
“The Americans and Western countries are putting pressure on Iraq and want it to inspect the aircraft flying into its airspace,” he said.
Iraq has inspected Syria-bound Iranian planes several times and Iran has conveyed its protest to the Iraqi government, Danaeifar explained.
A Western intelligence report in September claimed that Iran has been using civilian aircraft to fly military personnel and large quantities of weapons almost daily through Iraqi airspace to aid the Syrian government, according to Reuters.
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