HomePoliticsEmtrasur plane case in Argentina: kidnapping or justified action?

Emtrasur plane case in Argentina: kidnapping or justified action?

Without formal accusation of any crime or traces of any illicit this aircraft is still held

On June 6, the Emtrasur Cargo plane landed in Argentina from Mexico, a Boing 747 belonging to the recently created cargo transport company, which after leaving for Montevideo two days later and having its access to Uruguay revoked, had to return to Argentine territory finding that his retention had been ordered.

The order had been issued by the Argentine federal judge Federico Villena, complying with the boarding of the aircraft by at least 60 members of the Airport Security Police (PSA) where some dressed in commando-type suits and anti-drug dogs searched the aircraft without finding anything irregular.

Along with the order to retain the Emtrasur plane, Judge Villena ordered the confiscation of the passports of all the crew members made up of 14 Venezuelans and 5 Iranians, as well as their cell phones and tablets.

Suspicion as cause

The main argument put forward by Judge Villena is that Iranian citizens were on board this aircraft as part of the crew, which “raised suspicions".

Meanwhile, the constant reviews of the plane and the expertise against the personal belongings of the crew members who have not thrown anything, are to "search for documents and traces that can help determine what the crew was doing in Buenos Aires."

This is how, without formal accusation of any crime, without traces of any illicit activity by the crew or the company, this aircraft continues to be held, as is its crew, which is still in Argentina awaiting its release.

USA behind the case

The plane of Emtrasur was hired by the auto parts company Faurecia, supplier of Volkswagen, to bring spare parts and auto parts to Argentina from the Mexican city of Querétaro.

According to information reported by various media, the FBI is behind this action against the Venezuelan aircraft, because they would have alerted the Argentine authorities about the alleged presence of a member of the Quds Force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, that were declared by the United States as a terrorist organization.

Likewise, the United States Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) had included in its long list of sanctions the company Mahan Air of Iran, which before the sale to Venezuela, acted as the owner of this aircraft, a fact that meant the refusal to refuel in Argentine territory for fear of US reprisals.

The evident participation of the United States in the retention of this aircraft was revealed after the prosecutor's request Cecilia Incardona to the FBI and the Argentine AFI, the Foreign Ministry, the Ministry of Security or any other organization that wishes to present itself and facilitate if there is any request or suspicion about the 14 Venezuelans and 5 Iranians.

Despite the fact that there was no petition or relevant evidence against the crew and the aircraft, this Tuesday the prosecutor Incardona charged the Iranian pilot and the rest of the crew.

“With the progress of the investigative tasks carried out here, several traces emerged that impose the need to continue the investigation regarding Ghasemi Gholamreza, all the crew that depended on him, the aircraft and its cargo in accordance with the obligations of the Argentine State. to prevent and punish acts of terrorism”, according to the resolution of the prosecutor Incardona.

What does the southern executive say?

The Argentine government has tried to minimize the impact of this action by the justice of the southern country that could lead to a diplomatic impasse with Iran and Venezuela due to the retention of their citizens.

This has been demonstrated by the speech adopted by the president Alberto Fernández, who accused the opposition of "wanting to show something that is not" and assured that everything is limited to the difficulties in supplying fuel due to US sanctions.

“A Venezuelan plane arrived with which there was no irregularity. On board it were five Iranian people, with respect to whom, as far as we know, there is no type of restriction. Nor with respect to Venezuelans, "Fernández declared.

The Argentine Minister of Security, Aníbal Fernández, joined the words of the Argentine president, who was emphatic in pointing out that, at the time of entering Argentina, there were no red alerts from Interpol or any type of similar measure against any of the crew members. .

Venezuelan claim

For its part, Venezuela has claimed Uruguay the refusal to receive the aircraft with Venezuelan acronyms, indicating that this action put the crew at risk due to the low amount of fuel it had at the time the permission to land in Montevideo was revoked.

"Once they landed, it was found that the aircraft had only 17.000 liters of fuel, well below what is recommended by the Emtrasur Standardized Operational Procedure, which is established at 20.000 liters," they pointed out in a statement issued by the venezuelan chancellery

The Uruguayan foreign minister, Francisco Bustillo, responded to the Bolivarian government that the reason is that it is a sovereign country, so it can make the decisions it deems appropriate.
The Uruguayan government reported that it was Paraguay that gave them notice of the history of the plane.

At the same time, the Venezuelan company Emtrasur requested that the Argentine Justice release the plane retained in Ezeiza and return the aircraft.

As for the large crew, as explained, this aircraft belonged to an Iranian cargo company that transferred to Emtrasur, so the Iranian crew trained two Venezuelan crews on the operation of this aircraft.

“What are they putting together a false positive? Of course, of course, there are no doubts about that, we have no doubts (…) There are already people who have declared, not us, but they have declared from those countries that there are malicious procedures against that plane”, was the complaint made by the first vice president of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), Diosdado Cabello.

The warning made by Cabello, together with the absence of evidence that indicates any irregular activity by the crew and the evident role played by the US FBI and OFAC in the retention of this aircraft, give signs of a new legal action. against Venezuela and its companies within the framework of the sanctions imposed by the United States to provoke what they call "a regime change".

Speak Paraguay

The President of Paraguay, Mario Abdo Benitez, reported that it will provide information to the Justice on the Venezuelan plane of the Emtrasur company, held at the Ezeiza international airport, located in the province of Buenos Aires, Argentina.

"The National Government, fulfilling its obligation to report to justice, will present elements related to the case of the Iranian plane, hoping that the facts are investigated and clarified," Abdo Benítez posted on Twitter.

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