UN spox underlines respecting safety of civilian air travel

TEHRAN, Jul. 25 (MNA) – During a noon briefing by Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General, on Friday, the official underscored the significance of respecting the safety of civilian air travel.

Being questioned about the incident that took place over Syrian airspace, where a new US military aircraft came too close to Mahan Airlines, an Iranian civil aircraft, and created panic inside the plane, he said: "So, we have, we have no specific information on that incident, so I, and I checked with my colleagues in Montreal at ICAO [International Civil Aviation Organization]. They have nothing. They have not received anything as of yet."

"As a matter of, of principle, the safety of civilian air travel should be respected by all, but again, I have, that’s just a principled position.  I don’t have any, at this point, we don’t have any specific information on this incident," he added.

Mahan Air said on Friday that 12 passengers and crew of the flight underwent the medical procedure in Beirut hospital due to injuries they suffered in the quick movement of the plane to escape the approaching US military jets.

Iran immediately reacted to the incident, saying it will give a firm response in proper time.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran leaves no hostile action against the Iranian nation unanswered and will give a firm and appropriate response to any unwise measure when the time is ripe,” Foreign Ministry Spokesman Seyyed Abbas Mousavi said on Friday.

Mousavi went on to strongly condemn the ‘adventurous’ measure the CENTCOM terrorist organization and described it as a violation of international aviation rules and against regional peace and security.

CENTCOM's claiming that warplanes were carrying out routine air missions near the al-Tanf military base and have made a visual inspection at a safe distance is ‘absurd’, said the spokesperson, describing such measure as a result of numerous violation of laws. “The presence of US troops in Syria is illegal, and so is the mission of its fighter jets. More importantly, no one has allowed the US to inspect civilian airliners with its fighter jets. This is illegal and dangerous, and endangers the lives of civilians especially given the fact that despite claims, no safe distance was being observed.”

The Islamic Republic of Iran will pursue this US action through international bodies such as ICAO and will not let America undermine the international laws with its bullying behavior, he said.

The spokesperson warned of any new adventure by the US or the Israeli regime in the region, adding that the stability of West Asia should not turn into an instrument for election campaigns of the US.

HJ/4982041

News Code 161397

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