Iranian passenger plane forced to change course as US fighter jets approached – report

Iran promises political response after several passengers were reportedly injured when Mahan Air plane quickly changed altitude

The Mahan Air plane landed in Beirut after encountering US fighter jets over Syria. Some passengers suffered minor injuries.

The Mahan Air plane landed in Beirut after encountering US fighter jets over Syria. Some passengers suffered minor injuries. Photograph: Wolfgang Rattay/Reuters

Reuters
Published on Fri 24 Jul 2020

Two US fighter jets came close to an Iranian passenger plane over Syrian airspace, causing the pilot to change altitude quickly to avoid collision and injuring several passengers, Iran’s official IRIB news agency reported.

The agency initially said a single Israeli jet had come near the plane but later quoted the pilot as saying there were two jets that identified themselves as American.

In response, US Central Command said a single F-15 had made a visual inspection of the Iranian airliner “in accordance with international standards” to ensure the safety of coalition personnel at the military base in Al Tanf.

IRIB reported the pilot of the passenger plane contacted the jet pilots to warn them to keep a safe distance and they identified themselves as American. Video posted by the agency showed a single jet from the window of the plane and comments from a passenger who had blood on his face.

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