Iranian cargo plane suspected of bringing arms to Hezbollah departs Tehran

Source: Iranian cargo plane suspected of bringing arms to Hezbollah departs Tehra – Middle East – Jerusalem Post

“The Iranians are trying to come up with new ways and routes to smuggle weapons from Iran to its allies in the Middle East.”

BY SETH J. FRANTZMAN
 DECEMBER 30, 2018 10:16
Iranian cargo plane suspected of bringing arms to Hezbollah departs Tehran

A Fars Air Qeshm 747 that left Tehran Sunday morning, landing in Damascus at 10:30 a.m., has been accused in the past of transporting weapons to Hezbollah.

Eyewitnesses saw the aircraft land in Damascus.

The accusations surfaced in a September Fox News report based on western intelligence assessments. The cargo plane made suspicious flights in July and August to Damascus and Beirut.

“The Iranians are trying to come up with new ways and routes to smuggle weapons from Iran to its allies in the Middle East,” a source told Fox News.

The cargo plane made another suspicious trip on November 29 to Beirut. On December 25 it flew to Damascus and left later that same evening. Airstrikes, which Russia and Syria blamed on Israel, struck west of Damascus soon after.

Israel has warned in the past about Hezbollah storing weapons in locations in Beirut.

According to observers online who track suspicious flights and military activity, the arrival of the flight coincided with activity by at least two other flights off the coast of Lebanon that are involved in collecting intelligence.

“If I had to guess I would say they were targeting Iranian facilities in Syria and possible weapons transfers to Hezbollah in Lebanon,” Rick Francona, a retired US Air Force intelligence officer and former CNN military analyst tweeted Sunday morning.

 

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