US fighter jet challenges Iranian airliner

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Mahan Air is a private Iranian airline established in 1991


Iranian media say at least one US fighter jet has come dangerously close to an Iranian airliner in Syrian airspace – a claim rejected by the United States.

Iranian news agency Irib said the pilot of the Mahan Air plane had to change altitude quickly, injuring several passengers.

Video posted by Irib shows a jet from the plane window and a passenger with blood on their face.

But the US military later said its F-15 plane was at a safe distance.

“An American F-15 on a routine air mission near [al]-The Tanf garrison in Syria conducted a standard visual inspection of a Mahan Air airliner at a safe distance of approximately 1,000 meters (3,281 feet) from the airliner tonight, ”the airliner said. Capt Bill Urban, spokesperson for US Central Command, in a statement. Thursday.

He said the inspection was carried out to ensure the safety of personnel at the US military base in al-Tanf, near the border with Iraq and Jordan.

“Once the F-15 pilot identified the plane as a Mahan Air passenger plane, the F-15 opened safely from a distance from the plane,” the spokesperson added.

The Mahan Air plane en route from Tehran to Beirut landed safely in the Lebanese capital.

It was not immediately clear how many passengers and crew were on the plane.

After refueling, the plane returned to the Iranian capital on Friday.

In its previous reports, the Irib News Agency said two fighter jets could have been Israeli.

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Mahan Air is a private Iranian airline established in 1991.

In 2011, the United States imposed sanctions on Mahan Air, accusing it of providing financial, material and technological support to Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards.

In 2019, several European countries banned the company from operating at their airports.



Video caption

Flight tracking data and open source images show how Mahan Air continued to fly



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