Iran can pursue U.S. harassment against its plane at three levels: Zarif advisor

July 26, 2020 - 21:48

TEHRAN - Ali Najafi Khoshroodi, an advisor to Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, has said that Iran can pursue harassment against Iranian passenger plan at three levels.

“Iran can pursue the issue of harassment by the United States’ fighter jets against Mahan airplane at three levels of public diplomacy, political consultation and also legal complaint,” he told ISNA in an interview published on Sunday.

He noted that the U.S. action was a violation of international law.

Such actions are a kind of anarchism, he added.

“Presence of the United States’ fighter jets in Syria violates principle of non-interference. So, we should not keep silence towards this action,” he said.

Two U.S. warplanes conducted dangerous and aggressive maneuvering closed to an Iranian airliner on Thursday, putting lives of tens of civilian passengers on board in danger.

The U.S. fighter jets came close to the Iranian airliner, forcing its pilot to swiftly change altitude, a move that left at least two passengers injured.

In a statement on Thursday night, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said Iran will take the necessary political and legal actions once the investigation is completed.

Laya Joneidi, the presidential aide for legal affairs, also said the action against the passenger plane is a violation of the principles of international law.

She said the actions taken by the U.S. fighters are a violation of Articles 3 and 44 of the International Civil Aviation Convention (Chicago Convention).

According to Joneidi, the explanations provided so far are unjustified and unconvincing, so the actions taken by the fighters will cause the international responsibility of their respective governments and will lead to legal action by Iran, including in the ICAO Council and the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

The Syrian ambassador to Tehran has said that the harassment against the Iranian passenger plane in the Syrian sky was a terrorist act against the innocent civilians.

“Harassment against the Iranian passenger plane of Mahan airline by the United States’ fighter jets in Syria’s sky is a symbol of the United States’ terrorist actions against civilians, including women and children, and is also violation of law and international agreements on non-military flights,” Adnan Hassan Mahmoud said in a statement on Saturday. 

The Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor has said the United States’ harassment of the passenger plane constitutes a serious violation of international agreements relating to the safety of civil aviation.

Euro-Med Monitor’s legal adviser Tariq Hajjar said that “the U.S. military command’s description of the incident as ‘professional’ is inaccurate.”

“It is not professional for an armed military plane to harass a civilian plane that poses no danger at all, thus endangering the lives of dozens of civilian passengers,” he added.

NA/PA
 

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