Ukraine and Iran both have denied reports of hijacking of a Ukrainian evacuation plane from Afghanistan, reported The Jerusalem Post.
Tehran and Kiev denied hijacking of any Ukrainian evacuation plane in Afghanistan, The Jerusalem Post added.
Earlier in the day, Ukraine’s deputy foreign minister Yevgeny Yenin claimed that a Ukrainian plane was hijacked in Afghanistan by unidentified people who flew it into Iran, TASS news agency reported.
“Last Sunday, our plane was hijacked by other people. On Tuesday, the plane was practically stolen from us, it flew into Iran with an unidentified group of passengers onboard instead of airlifting Ukrainians. Our next three evacuation attempts were also not successful because our people could not get into the airport,” he said, reported TASS.
The Iranian Civil Aviation Authority denied the report, saying that the plane refuelled in Mashhad and then flew to Kiev.
According to the RBC Ukraine news agency, Oleg Nikolenko, a spokesman for the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry denied the report as well, saying “There are no captured Ukrainian planes in Kabul or elsewhere. The information about the ‘captured plane’ that is being circulated by some media outlets is not true.”
Nikolenko clarified that Yenin was only generally explaining the unprecedented level of difficulties that diplomats had to face in evacuating Ukrainians. It is unclear why Yenin said that plane was hijacked by armed persons and “actually stolen” if this was not the case, The Jerusalem Post added. (ANI).