Italy to ban flights by Iran’s Mahan Air from mid-December

 Italy to ban flights by Iran's Mahan Air from mid-December
Italy to ban flights by Iran's Mahan Air from mid-December

Italy is set to ban flights by Iran's Mahan Air, an Iranianindustry official said on Saturday, as the United States seeks action againstthe airline accused by the West of transporting military equipment andpersonnel to Middle East war zones.

Germany and France have both already banned flights by theairline, and Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio told U.S. Secretary ofState Mike Pompeo in early October that Rome was set to make a decision onwhether to follow suit.

Italy's air authority ENAC said in a statement that the ban onMahan's flights to Rome and Milan would take effect in mid-December.

The Association of Iranian Airlines (AIA) confirmed the news ofthe ban.

"Along with their pressure on our country, the Americanshave pressed Italy to stop Mahan Air flights to Rome and Milan," MaqsoudAsadi Samani, secretary of the AIA, was quoted as saying by the semi-officialnews agency Mehr.

Mahan Air officials could not be reached for comment.

Germany revoked the airline's licence in January in the wake ofU.S. pressure, while France banned it in March, accusing it of transportingmilitary equipment and personnel to Syria and other Middle East war zones.

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