Once again a story surfaces about weaponry and arms being transported to terrorist groups, only this time under diplomatic cover. Bulgarian newspaper Trud uncovered that Azerbaijan’s state-run Silk Way Airlines has shipped 350 planeloads of heavy weapons and ammunition to terrorist groups around the world during the last three years under diplomatic cover.
According to sources, reports have confirmed that Azerbaijan has been directly engaged in supplying weapons to extremist and terrorist groups across the world.
According to the investigative report carried out by Trud’s reporter Dilyana Gaytandzhieva, Azerbaijan asked the Foreign Ministries of various countries to issue a diplomatic exemption for these flights, allowing civilian planes to carry weapons which would normally be prohibited by the International Air Transport Association.
The reporter’s information is based on a large number of emails sent to her by an anonymous source:
Sources pointed out that Trud was able to obtain leaked files that include “correspondence between the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Embassy of Azerbaijan to Bulgaria with attached documents for weapons purchases and diplomatic clearance for over flight and/or landing in Bulgaria and many other European countries,” in addition to Syria, Iraq, the United States, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Turkey, and Israel, to name a few.
The leaked documents revealed that “Silk Way Airlines offered diplomatic flights to private companies and arms manufacturers from the US, the Balkans, and Israel, as well as to the militaries of Saudi Arabia, UAE, and US Special Operations Command (USSOCOM), and the military forces of Germany and Denmark in Afghanistan and of Sweden in Iraq.”
The report explained that “Diplomatic flights are exempt of checks, air bills, and taxes, meaning that Silk Way airplanes freely transported hundreds of tons of weapons to different locations around the world without regulation.”
According to the report, Saudi Arabia was among the countries that heavily purchased weapons and exported them on Silk Way Airlines diplomatic flights. Saudi Arabia did not buy the weapons to use it itself, but rather transported the arms on diplomatic flights to hand them to terrorist groups in Syria and Yemen.
American weapons manufacturers had shipped over $1 billion of weapons through Silk Way Airlines and Azerbaijan’s Air Force jets at times when Silk Way had a busy schedule.
The Trud reporter not only uncovered these facts through the leaked documents, but also daringly went to Syria’s Aleppo in December 2016, where she filmed underground warehouses belonging to Al-Nusra terrorist groups (al-Qaeda affiliate in Syria) full of heavy weapons coming from these countries one of which is Bulgaria.