Sunday, 03 April, 2016

“Aircraft Parts Still Hard to Gain”


The secretary of Association of Iranian Airlines (AIRA) censured certain Western states for creating difficulties for Iran to obtain aircraft parts due to sanctions.

Maqsoud As’adi Samani referred to Iran’s problems in procuring airplane parts because of the sanctions, saying the problems still remain despite the progress in nuclear talks between Tehran and world powers and the deal they signed in Geneva in November 2013.

After the Geneva Agreement a number of aircraft manufacturers began to cooperate with Iranian companies for a short period, but generally, aircraft parts are still supplied with difficulty due to the sanctions, he said.

This is while back in April, Iranian Minister of Road and Urban Development Abbas Akhoundi announced that the country has been negotiating with companies supplying airplane parts in parallel with the progress of nuclear talks with the Group 5+1 (Russia, China, the US, Britain, France and Germany).

The remarks come against the backdrop of the US-led sanctions against the country’s civil aviation industry over its nuclear energy program.

The US imposed sanctions of 1995 ban aviation companies from selling aircraft and repair parts to Iranian airlines. The US embargos endanger the safety of civil aviation in Iran because they prevent Tehran from acquiring parts and essential support for aviation safety.

Earlier this week, US officials said the Obama administration is actively working to block Tehran from using nine recently acquired Airbus Group SE jets in a battle over sanctions weeks before the two sides are supposed to complete a final nuclear deal.

Iranian officials this week threatened to take legal action against the US if it seeks to block the use of the jets.

But a senior US administration official said Wednesday the US would continue to “vigorously” enforce the sanctions it has in place on Iran despite the advanced state of talks on Tehran’s nuclear energy program.

Last month, the US Treasury Department imposed sanctions on Al-Naser Airlines, Syrian businessman Issam Shammout and his United Arab Emirates-based company Sky Blue Bird Aviation for allegedly serving as fronts for Mahan Air to buy the airplanes from European companies.

Earlier in May, a senior official with Iran’s Civil Aviation Organization (CAO) announced that the US government has violated the international law by imposing sanctions against two aviation companies that sold second-hand civilian aircraft to Iran.

Deputy Head of Civil Aviation Organization (CAO) for Aviation and International Affairs Mohammad Khodakarami further emphasized that based on the article 33 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation (also known as Chicago Convention), the contracting countries, including the US, have agreed to recognize the air fleets registered in other member states.

He went on to say that also according to the article 44 of the convention, the member countries should avoid discrimination against any contracting country.

The dispute comes as the nuclear talks between Iran and six powers have hit what the official called a “pretty tough” stage, three weeks before the June 30 deadline for completing a deal.

Iran and the Sextet reached a framework nuclear deal on April 2 and are now trying to flesh out a detailed agreement.

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