First Published: 2012-12-02


Iranian weapons fly easily to Syria via Iraq airspace


Tehran appears to have been tipped off by Iraqi officials as to when plane inspections will be conducted, thus helping it avoid detection.


Middle East Online

Air supply route for weapons

WASHINGTON - The air corridor over Iraq has emerged as a supply route for weapons for the beleaguered government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, including rockets, antitank missiles, rocket-propelled grenade and mortars, The New York Times reported late Saturday.

Citing unnamed US officials, the newspaper said that to the disappointment of the administration of President Barack Obama, US efforts to persuade the Iraqis to randomly inspect the flights have been largely unsuccessful.

Iran has an enormous stake in Syria, which is its staunchest Arab ally and has also provided a channel for Iran's support to the Lebanese Islamist movement Hezbollah, the report said.

According to the paper, Iran appears to have been tipped off by Iraqi officials as to when plane inspections would be conducted, thus helping Tehran avoid detection.

Iran's continued efforts to aid the Syrian government were described in interviews with a dozen US administration, military and Congressional officials, The Times said.

"The abuse of Iraqi airspace by Iran continues to be a concern," the paper quoted one of the officials as saying.

"We urge Iraq to be diligent and consistent in fulfilling its international obligations and commitments, either by continuing to require flights over Iraqi territory en route to Syria from Iran to land for inspection or by denying overflight requests for Iranian aircraft going to Syria."


Tunisia under state of emergency

Turkey downs Russia Su-24 fighter jet on Syria border

Lavrov says no war with Turkey after 'planned provocation'

Brussels extends terror alert as US issues worldwide travel warning

Somali pirates seize Iran fishing boat with 15 crew

Missing Iranian diplomat found dead in Saudi

Heavy Russia raids at site of Syria plane crash

Tunisia declares state of emergency after terrorist attack in heart of capital

Bahrain calls HRW torture report 'misleading'

Syria, Russia foreign ministers set Moscow talks

Rival Libya tribes sign peace deal to end months of fighting

Turkey reveals new cabinet of Erdogan allies

Hopes fade away as Sudan peace talks break without deal

At least 6 dead in Libya bomb attack

ISIS suicide bombers kill four in assault on Sinai hotel

Kerry visits Israel with scant hopes for major breakthrough

Hollande heads to Washington to seek support for war on ISIS

UAE blames Islamists for delay in military operation in Taez

Egypt kills 5 Sudanese migrants near border with Israel

Anti-Muslim hate crimes rise 300 percent in Britain

Russia eases restrictions on nuclear cooperation with Iran

Gulf leaders to hold annual summit on December 10

Ex-Gathafi Minister arrested over murder of UK policewoman

UK boosts military spending as pressure grows to join anti-ISIS strikes

Israel bars Palestinians from West Bank settlement bloc

Iraq suspends northern flights due to danger posed by Russia missiles

Syria army advances against ISIS in central province of Homs

Pro-Kurdish leader escapes assassination attempt in Turkey

Tunisia group claims beheading of young shepherd on behalf of ISIS

Kerry arrives in Abu Dhabi for Syria discussions

Three Palestinians killed as fresh violence hits West Bank

Iran arrests ISIS-linked cell near Iraq border

Brussels remains on high alert for second day in a row

Israel seeks to strip citizenship of those who join ISIS

France warns Libya as ISIS gains ground

Fear escalates as ISIS edges closer to Syria Christian town

Iran sentences reporter Jason Rezaian to prison

Egyptians vote in second phase of parliamentary elections

Assad grateful to Russia as army advances on ‘nearly every front’

Obama calls for resolve in face of terrorist threats

Russia bombs ISIS in heaviest strikes since beginning of Syria war

ISIS claims deadly attack on Iraq Shiite mosque

Iran Revolutionary Guard simulate capture of Al-Aqsa Mosque

Turkey-backed Syria rebels seize two border villages from ISIS

Israel shuts down second Palestinian radio station