“The release of these photographs allegedly showing Iran Air’s illegal activity comes as top U.S. air carrier manufacturer Boeing moves forward with a multi-billion dollar deal to sell Iran Air a new modern fleet.”
If the Trump administration still has the will to do something about the disastrous Iran nuclear deal, which is by no means clear, there are powerful moneyed interests determined to make sure it is not able to act.
“Iran Caught Shipping Soldiers to Syria on Commercial Flights in Violation of Nuclear Deal,” by Adam Kredo, Washington Free Beacon, August 23, 2017:
New photographs obtained by congressional leaders show Iran shipping militant soldiers to Syria on commercial airline flights, a move that violates the landmark nuclear agreement and has sparked calls from U.S. lawmakers for a formal investigation by the Trump administration, the Washington Free Beacon has learned.
Photographs published by a Washington, D.C., think-tank and provided to Congress show Iran using its flagship commercial carrier, Iran Air, to ferry militants to Syria, where they have joined the fight against U.S. forces in the region.
The new photographic evidence has roiled congressional leaders, who accuse Iran of violating the nuclear deal, which prohibits it from using commercial air carriers for military purposes. These lawmakers are demanding the Trump administration investigate the matter and consider imposing new sanctions on Iran.
The release of these photographs allegedly showing Iran Air’s illegal activity comes as top U.S. air carrier manufacturer Boeing moves forward with a multi-billion dollar deal to sell Iran Air a new modern fleet. Many in Congress have opposed the deal due to Iran’s longstanding use of commercial aircraft for military purposes, such as transporting weapons and troops to regional hotspots such as Syria and elsewhere. It remains unclear the extent to which the former Obama administration was aware of this activity, which came in part while it was promoting Western airline sales to Tehran.
Iran Air’s central role in the illicit transportation of militant forces to Syria could complicate Boeing’s efforts to move forward with the sale, which still requires approval from the Trump administration’s Treasury Department.
Congressional leaders are now calling for a suspension of all licenses permitting these sales in light of the new evidence, according to a letter obtained by the Free Beacon.
“Iran’s use of commercial aircraft for military purposes violates international agreements as well as Iranian commitments under the JCPOA,” or Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, according to the delegation of lawmakers pushing for an investigation. “We believe these photos mandate a thorough investigation of these practices and a comprehensive review of Iran’s illicit use of commercial aircraft.”
“During this investigation, the United States should suspend current and future licenses for aircraft sales to Iran,” the letter goes on to say.
Those calling for an investigation include Reps. Peter Roskam (R., Ill.), Lee Zeldin (R., N.Y.), Andy Barr (R., Ken.), and David Reichert (R., Wash.).
“Iran Air has engaged in Iran’s illicit transport of military goods and personnel to Syria since implementation of the” nuclear deal, the lawmakers write.
The Treasury Department has vowed in the past to consider and investigate any new evidence revealing Iran’s illicit use of commercial aircraft. The lawmakers are urging the Trump administration to make good on this promise….