Argentina stops plane with Iranians and Venezuelans
The confusion grew since Wednesday around the plane held in Buenos Aires and its nearly 20 crew members – who are under judicial investigation – after the Argentine government stated that the Iranian occupants would be flight instructors for the rest of the crew of nationality. Venezuelan.
The Minister of Security, Aníbal Fernández, said that “so far nothing has been found” that links the cargo plane of the Venezuelan company Embrasur and its 19 crew members with illegal activities, so “it is a certain possibility” that it was of a training flight.
In this way, the minister endorsed the theory recently outlined by the inspector of the Federal Intelligence Agency, Agustín Rossi, regarding the plane that is held at the Ezeiza international airport, on the outskirts of Buenos Aires and whose presence has been criticized by the opposition and the Jewish community.
Rossi considered that the five Iranians could be flight instructors who also included 14 Venezuelans, although he said it was a “presumption.”
Rossi himself also said that the aircraft of the company Embrasur -belonging to the Venezuelan state company Conviasa- arrived in the South American country from Mexico and that it was transporting a load for different Argentine auto parts companies that are suppliers of automobile companies.
The plane loaded the pieces in Mexico, passed through Caracas and had to land in the Argentine city of Córdoba before arriving in Buenos Aires because the weather conditions did not allow it to arrive directly at the Ezeiza airport. Once in the Argentine capital, his cargo was verified without problems.
The government has pointed out that foreigners whose passports, mobile phones and computers have been confiscated by the justice system are not deprived of their liberty.
However, they cannot leave the country by decision of federal judge Federico Villena. The magistrate ordered the confiscation of their belongings during a raid carried out the day before by the police at the hotel where they are staying, as part of the investigation that seeks to determine their identity and the reason for their arrival.
In this requisition, the Venezuelans had their passports stolen, while the Iranians had been subjected to the same measure previously, by decision of the immigration authorities.
The government maintains that there is no arrest warrant for the crew members and that they were authorized to enter.
The Quds Force
Minister Fernández pointed out that the authorities decided to retain the aircraft because after landing in Argentina, information came from foreign intelligence agencies that warned that it was operated in the past by Mahan Air, a “company related to the Quds force” of the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard. , whose “members and companies were marked or defined as terrorists in 2007 by the United States.
“But all of this must be checked, we do not make assumptions about it,” the official said.
The government has also indicated that the aircraft was in Paraguay in May to look for a cargo of tobacco that was going to Caracas and Aruba, while Uruguay recently did not allow it to enter.
Two days after its arrival in Buenos Aires, the aircraft took off bound for Uruguay -where, according to versions in the Argentine press, it intended to load fuel that oil companies had denied it on Argentine soil-, and after flying over the Río de La Plata for a few minutes it landed. again in the same terminal because the neighboring country did not allow his landing.
The United States applies sanctions to those who collaborate with the Venezuelan state company that owns Embrasur, which transports officials of the Nicolás Maduro regime.
ORGANIZATIONS REQUEST TOTAL CLARIFICATION
- The Argentine Israelite Mutual Association (AMIA) and the Delegation of Argentine Israelite Associations demand “total clarification” of the reasons for the arrival of the aircraft.
- Argentina was the target of two terrorist attacks: the first in 1992, which blew up the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires.
- The second was in 1994 and destroyed the AMIA headquarters, which, according to local justice, were devised by the Iranian regime.
- For the attack on the Jewish mutual, Interpol arrest warrants weigh on several former Iranian diplomats and officials.