The federal German government is slated to shut down Iran’s Mahan Air within its territory because the airline endangers American citizens at airports.
The mass circulation Bild newspaper reported on Friday that the expected closure will take place in January.
The American ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, has long urged the German government to take action against Mahan Air.
“Here in Germany, I have asked the German government to support our efforts to stop an airline called Mahan Air from utilizing German airspace and airports,” Grenell had said during a meeting with senior delegation from the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the Jerusalem Post reported in June. “We know that Mahan Air has been used by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps [IRGC] as a mode of transport for weapons, resources and fighters, so we’re asking our allies to help us put a stop to it.”
Bild reported that American politicians and security officials told the German government that American citizens are endangered at airports because of Mahan Air’s activities in the federal republic. The United States classifies the IRGC as a terrorist entity.
Germany has declined to outlaw the IRGC or join the re-imposed US sanctions against the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Mahan Air frequently uses the airport in the West German city of Düsseldorf and that of the Bavarian capital, Munich.
The Post reported in October that Varengold Bank, which is based in Hamburg, conducts business with IranAir – an airline that the US sanctioned on November 4.
A source confirmed the business of the two European banks with Iran. The source’s information was buttressed by IranAir’s website, revealing the bank account data for Varengold. IranAir Deutschland (Germany) lists on its website account information for transfers to Varengold.
The US Department of Treasury sanctioned IranAir in 2011 for “providing material support and services to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and Ministry of Defense and Armed Forces Logistics.”
As a result of the Iran deal in 2015, the US delisted IranAir in 2016 from its sanctions list.
IranAir uses airports in the German cities of Cologne, Frankfurt and Hamburg for passenger and cargo flights. According to a UN resolution from 2010, IranAir was cited as a company that was possibly involved in sanctions evasion.
Why is Mahan Air allowed to fly into Munich and Düsseldorf? I’m going to keep asking everyday. Read the fact sheet on them for yourself. https://t.co/Bvo16nvupo— Richard Grenell (@RichardGrenell) September 14, 2018