A document has been signed Tuesday by all members of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of the Americas - Peoples' Trade Agreement (ALBA-TCP) demanding Argentine returns the Emtrasur Boeing 747-300 freighter airplane to Venezuela.
The aircraft took off for Montevideo but was banned from entering Uruguayan airspace and returned to Buenos Aires Ezeiza airport. It had been denied refueling citing US sanctions against it for its alleged involvement in Iran-sponsored terrorist activities.
An Argentine Federal judge later agreed to allow US Judiciary to participate in the investigations into the alleged real motives for the trip.
The signatories of Tuesday's declaration also denounced that the crew remains illegally and illegitimately retained in Argentina. The regional bloc insisted that the crew had been participating in various humanitarian aid tasks in the region in response to natural disasters and that the aircraft was owned by Empresa de Transporte Aerocargo del Sur (Emtrasur), a subsidiary of flag-carrier Conviasa.
This illegal retention constitutes a violation of the basic human rights of the crew, such as freedom of movement and respect for personal dignity, and is part of a new maneuver of non-compliance with the Charter of the United Nations and International Law, read the statement released in Caracas.
The freighter's crew consisted of 14 Venezuelans and 5 Iranians, some of whom have been released from Argentina while others remain unable to leave the country.
Meanwhile, the Nicolás Maduro administration has released a cartoon demanding the release of the Emtrasur airplane.
”This is your captain speaking. We inform you that we are not allowed to land in Montevideo (Uruguay) to refuel. We must return to Buenos Aires (Argentina). Stay in your seats, says a voice-over, after which a woman is shown making the sign of the cross and her T-shirt reads humanitarian aid.
The video then shows crew members loading supplies onto the plane, carrying Venezuelan flags when a police officer tells them that the aircraft had been seized.
Hand over your passports, identification documents, and telephone equipment. The plane is being held at the airport and you are prohibited from leaving the country,” says the officer, after which the occupants of the flight look distressed and watch images of their families before handing over their cell phones.
Alba by MercoPress on Scribd
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