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Deal or no deal, Trump should punish Iran’s aviation sector

Deal or no deal, Trump should punish Iran’s aviation sector

Emanuele Ottolenghi
5th May 2018 - The Hill

The decision on whether or not Boeing should sell passenger aircraft to Iran should not be made by Boeing, but by President Trump, says FDD’s Emanuele Ottolenghi in his latest piece for The Hill. He also argues why targeting Iran’s aviation sector should be a priority of President Trump’s – independent of the nuclear deal.

An excerpt from the op-ed follows:

“The essential fact to consider is that Iranian commercial airlines have airlifted weapons and military personnel to Syria, fueling mass human rights violations and large-scale atrocities that include the use of chemical weapons, indiscriminate bombings of civilian targets, ethnic cleansing, and the large-scale use of torture.

Among the culprits in the airlift is Iran Air, Iran’s main commercial airline and a major buyer of Boeing aircraft. As I have documented repeatedly in articles and Congressional testimony, the airline directly participated in the Tehran-orchestrated airlift, with more than 140 recorded flights to Damascus between January 2016 (when the JCPOA’s implementation began) and May 2017, when its scheduled flights to Syria suddenly went dark.

Mahan Air continues flying to this day, with 416 flights recorded since January 2016. So does Syria’s national carrier, along with a Syrian private airline (Cham Wings), an IRGC-owned airline (Pouya Air), and two Boeing 747s operated by the IRGC and the Iranian Air Force, totaling more than 1,500 flights by my count since the airlift began.”

Read the full piece from The Hill here.