An Iranian airplane, operated by Pouya Air, was not allowed to land at Erbil International Airport on Monday, the airport’s director told to Iran International.
Ahmed Hoshyar said on Monday that the airport prevented the unauthorized cargo plane -- en route from Iran’s northwestern city of Orumiyeh – because it had not provided details about its crew, cargo and time of arrival.
According to Hoshyar, Iranian authorities had been informed about the necessary protocols before landing, including having a representative and renting an office at the airport as well as providing necessary data about the plane.
Pouya Air contacted Erbil’s authorities about the flight four days ago, but the company failed to fulfill the protocols, he said, adding that “the plane did not have any of the requirements needed for landing.”
Pouya Air is identified as an alias for Iranian airline Yas Air, under US terrorism sanctions since March 2012 for acting on behalf of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard’s Quds (Qods) force (IRGC-QF) for transporting illicit cargo, including weapons, to Iran’s clients in the region. The company began operations in 2000 as Qeshm Air but changed its name to Pars Air in 2006 and later to Yas Air in 2008, before it changed its name again to Pouya Air in late 2012.
Erbil International Airport, which houses personnel from the global coalition and US forces, has on many occasions been targeted by rocket and drone attacks, reportedly blamed on Iran-backed militias.