IATA halts Iran Air from using payment service
The International Air Transport Association said Monday that it has suspended Tehran's state-owned Iran Air from using its payment settlement services, due to sanctions imposed by the United States.
The suspension "is in response to new sanctions imposed by the US Office of Foreign Assets Control," said Chris Goater, IATA spokesman.
"Since IATA has to comply, we were obliged to suspend Iran Air from our settlement services," he added.
The industry association's settlement service serves as a money exchange between travel agents and airlines.
The United States barred Americans from doing business with Iran Air in June, noting that the airline has been used by Tehran's powerful Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps to "transport military related equipment" since 2006.
Iran Air has been under US sanctions since 1995 that have prevented any sale of Boeing or Airbus aircraft or spare parts to it, and as a result it has become one of the most dilapidated airlines in the world.
The airline serves 35 international destinations in Asia and Europe. In July 2010, the European Union banned most of Iran Air's planes from its airspace for safety reasons.
© 2011 AFP