CANBERRA—The Armenian National Committee of Australia has called on the Federal Government to investigate Australian flights made by a cargo airline owned by the family of Azerbaijan’s dictatorship, which has past links to transporting arms and support to terrorist mercenaries in the Middle East.
Flightradar24 confirms that Silk Way Airlines, which is owned by the daughter of dictator Ilham Aliyev, conducted flights between Perth and Baku while Azerbaijan has been actively attacking Armenia and the Armenian Republic of Artsakh.
“We urge the Federal Government to investigate the Azerbaijani dictatorship’s Silk Way Airlines, who are reported to have transported arms to terrorists in various conflict zones, to ensure no Australian entity is complicit in Baku’s military destabilizing aggression and war crimes against the indigenous Armenians of the Artsakh Republic as well the Republic of Armenia,” said ANC-AU Executive Director, Haig Kayserian.
“Armenians are under attack by Aliyev, who have received jihadists and air force support from fellow dictatorship Erdogan, and we need to ensure Australia is on the right side of history in, and does not indirectly become complicit to, this unfolding crisis.”
Recently, Flightradar24 showed that two different cargo planes of the same Silk Way Airline were operating roundtrip flights from Baku to Israel. The flight tracker showed the first Azerbaijani IL-76TD ZP4612 plane departing from Israel’s Uvda region to Baku. Another Azerbaijani IL-76TD-90VD is tracked departing from Baku and entering Turkey’s airspace via Georgia en-route to Israel.
Russian-Israeli blogger Alexander Lapshin quoted Israeli politician Roman Bronfman on Monday as saying Israel was shipping arms to Azerbaijan.
This would not the first time that Silk Way Airlines has supplied weaponry to terrorist fighters in different parts of the world. In 2018, an investigation published in the Bulgarian newspaper Trud on July 2 revealed the illegal and large-scale export and sale of arms to Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Congo by Silk Way Airlines under the cover of diplomatic flights (here).
Documents implicating Silk Way Airlines in arms supplies revealed that from 2015-2018, Azerbaijan orchestrated roughly 350 diplomatic flights transporting weapons for war conflict across the world, including terrorist groups in Syria.
“There is clearly enough reason for the Armenian-Australian community to be concerned by the operations of Silk Way Airlines, with its checkered history, on our shores and we will seek answers,” added Kayserian.