Royal plane rerouted from Iranian airspace

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Military plane carrying Spanish crown price was rerouted 2,000 kilometres as Iran prohibits such planes from flying over its territory.

25 June 2008

MADRID / TEHRAN - Owing to a last-minute security decision, the official plane carrying Crown Prince Felipe on a surprise visit to Afghanistan on 17 June was rerouted 2,000 kilometres to avoid Iranian airspace.

The measure was taken due to a recent Iranian announcement prohibiting military C-130 planes, such as that carrying the prince, from flying over its territory. Relations have worsened of late between Europe and Iran over the latter's efforts to acquire nuclear energy.

Iran says it is concerned these planes could have a role in any eventual attack on its installations.

Although Iran had offered to make an exception for the Spanish royal on 1 July, the Foreign Ministry suggested an alternative route be taken 24 hours before the scheduled take-off.

[El Pais / M. G. / Ángeles Espinosa / Expatica]

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