Iran’s Mahan Air begins A340-600 service

Iran’s Mahan Air has deployed the first of seven recently delivered A340-600s into revenue service from 1 June with services to Istanbul and Dubai. With US sanctions imposed on Iran since 1979, Iranian carriers are unable to source its capacity needs through traditional channels and are forced to use more obtuse acquisition method.


Iran’s Mahan Air has deployed the first of seven recently delivered A340-600s into revenue service from 1 June with services to Istanbul and Dubai. With US sanctions imposed on Iran since 1979, Iranian carriers are unable to source its capacity needs through traditional channels and are forced to use more obtuse acquisition method. In the case of Mahan, the A340-600s were sourced via Mahan Air’s Iraqi proxy, Al-Naser Airlines, according to a Reuters report.

The US Government claims Mahan Air works with Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF) to ferry operatives, weapons, and funds in support of the Asad regime on its flights to Syria, and also provides transportation services to Lebanese Hizbollah, which has been separately designated as a terrorist group.

As such, the US Treasury Department has listed the aircraft as assets liable for seizure while blacklisting Al Naser Airlines along with Syrian national Issam Shammout and his Ras al Khaimah-based company, Sky Blue Bird Aviation, for allegedly facilitating the deal.

The threat move has provoked and angry response from Iran, which claims the US does not have the right to embargo its airlines’ flights abroad and has threatened international legal action if any attempt is made to seize the aircraft.