BEIRUT, LEBANON (6:20 P.M.) – The Russian Aerospace Forces were redirected from Iraq’s airspace on Friday and forced to reroute over Iran, air traffic observers reported this afternoon.
According to the reports, a Russian Tu-154M was traveling from Moscow to the Syrian coastal province of Latakia, when the Iraqi government made the decision to block the warplane’s flight over their airspace.
No reason was cited by the Iraqi Ministry of Defense for blocking this Russian warplane.
The Russian warplane is reportedly making another attempt to fly across Iraq in order to reach the Latakia Governorate in western Syria.
Syria and Iraq have an agreement to allow their air forces to use one another’s airspace while attacking the Islamic State (ISIS); however, the Russian jet is likely transporting troops to the Hmeymim Airbase in Jableh, which begs the question as to why were they prohibited from using the Iraqi airspace.