China-Bound UAE Aircraft Carrying Weapons Detained in India

Discussion in 'China' started by RPK, Sep 7, 2009.

  1. RPK

    RPK Indyakudimahan Senior Member

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    Arms plane held in city

    The Telegraph - Calcutta (Kolkata) | Frontpage | Arms plane held in city

    Calcutta, Sept. 6: A plane belonging to the United Arab Emirates’ air force and its nine crew members were detained in Calcutta airport this evening for allegedly carrying arms and explosives in violation of a declaration that allowed them to land for refuelling in the city.

    The aircraft was on its way to Hanyang in China from Abu Dhabi and had landed at Calcutta airport to refuel around 5.30pm.

    Customs sources said the eastern regional command of the Indian Air Force had allowed the aircraft to land on the basis of a clearance (AOR 913/914) it received from the Delhi regional command.

    Around 6.30pm, customs officials from Calcutta airport boarded the aircraft for a customary check.

    “They were shocked to find a large cache of arms, ammunition and explosives inside the aircraft and immediately informed the Airports Authority of India, police and the Central Industrial Security Force,” a customs official told The Telegraph.

    The Delhi regional command clarified on enquiry that it had issued the clearance to land for refuelling on the basis of a verbal declaration from the UAE air force that the aircraft would not carry any arms or ammunition.

    The captain and the eight other crew members were detained and accommodated at a private luxury hotel off EM Bypass. The aircraft was sealed and parked at a bay near hangar number 14 of the airport, another customs official said.

    At 11.30pm, the Indian Air Force cancelled the clearance it had issued to the aircraft.

    Hanyang, the apparent destination of the plane, was one of the three cities that merged into modern-day Wuhan, the capital of the Hubei province in China. The city is known for Hanyang Arsenal which produces the Hanyang rifle — an indigenous copy of the 1888 German weapon heavily used in the Second World War and the Korean and Vietnam wars.

    Legal proceedings against the UAE crew are scheduled to start from Monday. If the authorities press charges, the aircraft and crew will have to stay in the city till the process is completed.

    However, on June 19, a Ukrainian aircraft, hired by the US military and carrying arms from Diego Garcia to Afghanistan, was allowed to leave after it intruded into Indian airspace and was forced to land in Mumbai.

    The AN-124 was allowed to leave after the US embassy stepped in and senior diplomats got in touch with the external affairs ministry, saying that the intrusion was an inadvertent mistake, a source had said in June.
     
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  3. RPK

    RPK Indyakudimahan Senior Member

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    http://www.ptinews.com/news/268274_UAE-plane-carrying-arms-detained--permitted-to-fly-later

    Kolkata, Sept 7 (PTI) An aircraft belonging to the United Arab Emirates Air Force was found carrying a large cache of arms and ammunition and detained along with its nine crew members in this east Indian city Sunday night.

    The plane, bound for Hanyang in China from Abu Dhabi, landed at the NSC Bose International airport here for refuelling Sunday night.

    Airport sources said that while customary checking of the plane by customs officials it was found that a large cache of arms and ammunition were stockpiled inside the flight.

    The airport authority of India was informed and as the plane's crew did not inform the authorities here that the aircraft was carrying arms, its return flight order was cancelled and nine crew members were detained.
     
  4. I-G

    I-G Tihar Jail Banned

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    China-bound UAE air force plane detained at Kolkata with arms, explosives

    China-bound UAE air force plane detained at Kolkata with arms, explosives
    IANS 7 September 2009, 01:08pm IST


    KOLKATA: A transport aircraft of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) air force that had landed at Kolkata airport for refuelling on Sunday evening was
    detained for carrying arms and explosives without declaring them, an official spokesperson said here on Monday. ( Watch Video )

    The UAE air force plane (C130J) was flying from Abu Dhabi to Hanyang in China and had landed at Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International (NSCBI) airport here to refuel.

    "It was a routine transit. They had applied for permission through the embassy and subsequently followed the necessary procedure by filling up an official form," a Ministry of Defence spokesperson said.

    "But in the official form they didn't mention whether the aircraft was carrying any arms or explosives on board. They just left that particular column blank," MoD spokesperson (Eastern Command) wing commander Mahesh Upasani said.

    He said, "When the customs officials from the airport boarded the aircraft to carry out a customary check they found a large cache of arms, ammunition and explosives inside, which was not mentioned in the form. They immediately informed the Airports Authority of India (AAI), police and the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF).

    "Later all nine crew members, including the captain, were detained and the aircraft was parked at one of the airport bays," he said, adding that the customs officials did a "wonderful job" by detecting the arms and ammunition in the plane.

    "The UAE air force personnel are being interrogated. The matter will sorted out through both the embassies mutually," the spokesperson said.

    Asked whether anyone can leave a particular column blank in the transit permission form, the spokesperson said: "No, they have to mention something. No one can leave a column just nil when applying for a routine transit."

    China-bound UAE air force plane detained at Kolkata with arms, explosives - Kolkata - City - NEWS - The Times of India
     
  5. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    China-Bound UAE Aircraft Carrying Weapons Detained in India - Bloomberg.com

    China-Bound UAE Aircraft Carrying Weapons Detained in India


    By Bibhudatta Pradhan

    Sept. 7 (Bloomberg) -- Indian authorities have detained a United Arab Emirates air force plane bound for China and its eight-member crew after a customs inspection found undeclared arms and ammunition, an airport official said.

    The aircraft landed in the eastern city of Kolkata yesterday for refueling on its way to Hanyang, part of the city of Wuhan in China’s Hubei province, Mahesh Kaul, director of Kolkata’s airport, said in a telephone interview from the city.

    Crew members informed customs officers checking the plane that it was carrying arms that had not been declared when permission to transit India was requested, Kaul said. The flight began in Abu Dhabi

    “They will not be allowed to fly until the investigation is over,” Kaul said, without giving further details of the cargo aboard the plane.

    No one at the UAE Embassy in New Delhi was available to comment on the incident, a secretary at the embassy’s press office said today.

    To contact the reporter on this story: Bibhudatta Pradhan in New Delhi at [email protected].
     
  6. IBRIS

    IBRIS Senior Member Senior Member

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    Arms laden UAE air force plane bound for china breaks rules

    A China-bound cargo plane of the United Arab Emirates(UAE) Air Force was detained and its ten crew members including the pilot questioned when customs officials found arms and ammunition on board the aircraft after it made a scheduled transit landing at the airport in Kolkata.

    The 10 crew members were taken to a nearby luxury hotel and being questioned by the customs officials who along with immigration officials found the plane was carrying "arms and ammunition" during a routine check yesterday, Wg Cdr Mahesh Upasani, Spokesman of the Eastern Air Command said.

    The C-130 plane was was on its way to Hanyang in China from Abu Dhabi and had landed at the NSC Bose International airport to refuel around 5.30 PM yesterday.

    The crew members did not inform in the routine declaration submitted to authorities that arms and ammunition were in the plane, which however had the required civil and military clearance for transit through Kolkata, Upasani said. The particular column in the proforma was left blank, he added.

    Upasani said the quantity and type of arms and ammunition being carried was immediately not known. The customs officials did a "wonderful job" by detecting the arms and ammunition in the plane., he said.

    Customs officials said that the Ministry of External Affairs had been briefed about the development.

    External Affairs Minister S M Krishna said the government is trying to get a report and will look into the matter.

    The plane was taken to Bay number 14 and parked there and it was not known when the plane would be permitted to take off, Airport sources said.
    Arms laden UAE air force plane breaks rules- TIMESNOW.tv - Latest Breaking News, Big News Stories, News Videos
     
  7. RPK

    RPK Indyakudimahan Senior Member

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    fullstory

    UAE in contact with Indian officials over detained plane

    Dubai, Sep 7 (PTI) The UAE government is in "constant contact" with the Indian officials over its Air Force plane that was today detained in Kolkata for carrying arms, a senior official here has confirmed.

    UAE Foreign Ministry's Director-General Juma Al Junaibi confirmed this this evening in a statement released to the country's official news agency Wam.

    In his statement, Al Junaibi stressed the deep-rooted relations between the UAE and India and also reiterated UAE's respect to the sovereignty of India.

    The China-bound cargo plane of the United Arab Emirates Air Force was detained and its ten crew members including the pilot questioned when customs officials found arms and ammunition on
     
  8. RPK

    RPK Indyakudimahan Senior Member

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    MEA to facilitate release of arms-laden UAE plane- Politics/Nation-News-The Economic Times


    NEW DELHI: External affairs minister S M Krishna on Tuesday said his ministry would facilitate early release of the United Arab Emirates Air Force
    plane that was detained in Kolkata after arms and ammunition were found on board.

    The decision to facilitate early release of the China-bound plane was taken after the UAE government and embassy in New Delhi "formally regretted" not divulging contents of the cargo and that matter was reduced to a "technical error".

    "The UAE authorities both here and in Abu Dhabi have since formally regretted the omission in clearly indicating items carried by the aircraft and have described it as a 'technical error'. They have also provided details about the cargo which consists of combat missile," Mr Krishna said.

    The UAE embassy had asked for clearance for overflying and landing of the Air Force flight at Kolkata Airport, but made no mention of the contents of the cargo. The C-130 Hercules, which is among the biggest transport aircraft in the world, had taken off from UAEAF's Western Air Command base in Abu Dhabi and was on its way to Xiangyang in China.

    When the flight arrived from Abu Dhabi on September 6, captain of the flight, Major Ibrahim Alshamsei, filed a declaration to Customs saying that the flight was carrying "arms/ammunition/explosives", Mr Krishna said in the statement. Following this, the plane was detained at Kolkata Airport as the initial application made no mention of arms or ammunition.

    The captain and the nine crew members were detained and interrogated following which Customs sent a detailed report to the external affairs ministry. India continued to remain in close touch with the UAE government. Based on the contents of the Customs report followed by the clarification and regret expressed by the UAE authorities, MEA decided to facilitate the release of the plane.
     
  9. RPK

    RPK Indyakudimahan Senior Member

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    Egypt ammo on UAE aircraft? - Kolkata - City - NEWS - The Times of India

    KOLKATA: Part of the cargo that the UAE Air Force C-130 Hercules aircraft, now parked in a remote bay near hangar 14 at Kolkata airport, could be
    ammunition procured from Egypt. This was allegedly being transported to Xiangyang in China.

    This was revealed in a document that the customs department seized from the crew of the aircraft during interrogation. According to this document, an agreement exists between China and UAE through which, the former supplies weapons in return for ammunition from Egypt.

    While this may have solved the mystery behind the ammunition in the cargo hold, officials are still not sure about the contents of three metal boxes that were also found. While the crew said that these boxes contained explosives, no details were provided as to their nature. In its report, the customs department has clearly mentioned that the cargo is hot'. This implies that it consists of ammunition and explosives.

    In a statement released in Delhi by the external affairs ministry, it has been confirmed that the aircraft is carrying weapons which include "combat" missiles.

    The unknown cargo has led to an impass? as India cannot be party to transit or proliferation of any banned material' through its soil. "If the goods in the boxes are illegal, diplomatic immunity will not work despite the friendly relations between the two nations," a source said.

    If UAE refuses to disclose the mysterious contents, India may have to cancel the flight plan of the aircraft to China and escort' it back to the edge of Indian airspace over Arabian Sea. Indian Air Force fighter jets may do the escorting through Indian territory. According to defence ministry sources, they have not yet received any instructions to clear the aircraft.

    Even as the UAE embassy is trying to pass off the incident as just a faux pas by an inexperienced employee, Indian authorities are trying to find out why the aircraft chose this particular flight path on its way to China.

    "The aircraft could easily have flown across Pakistan and the area bordering Afghanistan into China. Did it avoid that route as US forces are active in the area?" an officer wondered.

    Indian immigration authorities made it clear on Tuesday that the nine persons who landed in trouble after touching down at Kolkata on Sunday evening could leave if they wished to. But they would have to
    take a commercial jet instead of the C-130 Hercules. The team, all confirmed as UAEAF personnel, have
    refused to leave the country without the aircraft.

    The nine-member team has been stranded in Kolkata for over 60 hours now following the aircraft's seizure by Indian Customs officers on charges of issuing false declaration.

    Army intelligence officers are probing the role of a Delhi-based private agency that had made the flight arrangements and organised ground handling by Air India during its touchdown in Kolkata.
     
  10. ZOOM

    ZOOM Founding Member

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    This particuler Military Cargo plane detention giving utmost creadibility to most seasoned Military observer regarding their view of targetting India through various anti-Indian means. In this case some rough nations like Pakistan and BD has some serious role to play, because Chinese government hasn't made any commenting about such incident, and for what purpose Cargo Plane with ammunitions, Grendes and Guns is still to get completely unmasked. As country like China is one of the larget exporters of this weapons in the world and hence it is very difficult to summerize for what purpose Indian Airspace was chosen to transport this ammunitions.
     
  11. RPK

    RPK Indyakudimahan Senior Member

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    Sleuths at sea over UAE plane's mission - dnaindia.com

    New Delhi: Interrogators are still clueless as to where the arms-carrying UAE Air Force plane was headed and who supplied the weapons. The C-130 Hercules aircraft stopped for fuel at Netaji Subhas International Airport on Sunday and was detained after officials found weapons in it during a routine check. Significantly, the crew did not disclose in the transit form that there were weapons in the plane.

    A highly-placed source in the home ministry said that the 10 crew members were not able to shed light on who supplied the arms and where the plane was going. Though the UAE government had secured permission for refuelling at Kolkata, it did not reveal that the plane was carrying arms.

    Even more worrying is the fact that documents with the crew do not mention where the consignment is to be delivered. "The documents simply say that the plane was bound for China. The crew, however,have reportedly said that Xiangyang was the destination," he added.

    Even after hours of interrogation, the crew have not been able to say who was to receive the consignment, that contains explosives, ammunition and three boxes of guns. The Chinese government's silence on whether the package was meant for them, has raised doubts on whether the aircraft was actually going to Xiangyang or any other place in China.

    Investigators from the customs department and the defence and external affairs ministries are unable to figure out why such a small consignment should be sent to a country that is one of the biggest arms exporters in the world. "This has raised serious doubts about the motive of the aircraft's mission," he said. The UAE government authorities were reportedly in touch with their Indian counterparts. Efforts were being made to sort out the mess at diplomatic levels.
     
  12. RPK

    RPK Indyakudimahan Senior Member

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    UAE apologises for aircraft row, India assures early release- Hindustan Times

    India on Tuesday said the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has "apologised" for not declaring the consignment of weapons its China-bound cargo plane was carrying that led to its detention at Kolkata airport, and assured early release of the aircraft will be facilitated.

    Indian authorities on Sunday detained an UAE Air Force plane that landed in Kolkata from Abu Dhabi on its way to Xianyang, China, after discovering arms and explosives on board.

    The military transport plane, the C-130 Hercules, was allowed to land at Kolkata to refuel, but it did not declare its cargo.

    The interrogation of the pilot and nine crew members of aircraft, however, revealed that the flight was carrying arms, ammunition and explosives. The detention of the aircraft, that entered its third day on Tuesday, was threatening to turn into a diplomatic row till the UAE authorities apologised.

    Clearing the air, the external affairs ministry said on Tuesday that the confusion arose as no mention of the arms and ammunition was made at the time of initial application for landing.

    The authorities at Kolkata airport, therefore, detained the aircraft for further investigation, the ministry said.

    "Accordingly, after the concurrence of the pilot-in-command of the aircraft, the custom Officials entered the aircraft to inquire about the nature of cargo," it said in a statement.

    "The UAE authorities both here and in Abu Dhabi have since formally regretted the omission in clearly indicating items carried by the aircraft and have described it as a technical error," the ministry said.

    Captain of the flight, Major Ibrahim Alshamsei has filed a declaration to the customs stating that the flight was carrying arms/ammunition/explosives. They have also provided details about the cargo which consists of combat missiles, the ministry said.
     
  13. RPK

    RPK Indyakudimahan Senior Member

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    Drama over, UAE plane flies to China - Kolkata - City - NEWS - The Times of India


    KOLKATA: The United Arab Emirates Air Force C-130 J Super Hercules aircraft, which had been held up at the Kolkata airport since Sunday evening
    following the discovery of arms, ammunition and explosives in its cargo, finally took off for Xiangyang in China at 9.24 am on Thursday. The nine crew members left by the flight as well.

    Though there were speculations on whether the plane would be escorted back to Sunday's entry point into Indian airspace over the Arabian Sea, the defence ministry and Indian Air Force allowed it to take its original path. The plane reached Xiangyang around noon after flying over Dhaka, Chittagong and Kunming.

    The plane had been seized by Customs authorities on Sunday night as the documentation submitted prior to its arrival did not disclose the cargo. The technical halt for refuelling and giving the crew rest was originally scheduled to last 13 hours, but stretched to 88 hours.

    Though crew members had been cleared by the immigration department on Tuesday and the ministry of external affairs (MEA) and ministry of defence (MoD) indicated they would allow the aircraft to proceed the day after, the flight was held up due to delay in applying for Air Defence/AOR clearance by the UAE government.

    The crew had gone down to the airport on Wednesday afternoon, expecting a clearance to take off, but had to return to the hotel after a four-hour wait. They heaved a sigh of relief when the permissions arrived late on Wednesday.

    It was learnt that the UAE government has admitted to a mistake in the documentation and apologized for failing to report the weapons. Since UAE has friendly relations with India, the government considered the matter sympathetically to avoid a diplomatic row.

    The matter could have been resolved earlier had conventional weapons been on board. But the presence of three boxes, marked "combat missiles", led to the logjam. Sleuths suspected that deadly US-made Harpoon missiles were being channelized to China from UAE and Egypt. If that suspicion were proved true, the unauthorized proliferation could lead to regional imbalances and trigger a crisis, felt experts.

    "The presence of missiles on board made the situation grave. Already, there are reports of Pakistan having modified Harpoon missiles to strike land targets in India," an analyst pointed out
     
  14. Sridhar

    Sridhar House keeper Moderator

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    Strategic ministries feign ignorance about plane release
    Ajay Banerjee
    Tribune News Service
    New Delhi, September 10
    India’s two strategic ministries, the Defence and the Home, have been pushed into silence over the “diplomatic” release of a planeload of arms, missiles, ammunition and explosives, which a UAE military aircraft was ferrying to China. The plane flew off from Kolkata this morning.

    It was not allowed to fly over Indian land fearing a “Purulia arms drop” kind of situation in the northeast. Rather it flew over the Bay of Bengal as it was carrying explosives, confirmed a source. The plane, a C-130 Hercules transporter, had been detained on Sunday night at Kolkata where it had landed for re-fuelling.
    Senior officials in both ministries are tightlipped over the developments and are feigning ignorance about the incident. Sources confirmed that clutch of security agencies handled by these two ministries were clearly “unhappy” and were under immense pressure to keep quiet. The “diplomatic” channels of a “friendly” country were working overtime to let-off the plane which surely was in the “suspicious” category, said a source.
    Strangely, officials of both ministries today denied having any knowledge about the nature of cargo on board the plane. This is despite the fact that sleuths of the Intelligence bureau had boarded the plane and interrogated the nine-member crew. The military liaison unit at the Kolkata airport also inspected the cargo. Besides this a team of the customs department that comes under the finance ministry also inspected the cargo.
    The pilot has reportedly told investigators that he was a mere “courier” and would often fly weapons to China for “testing”, sources said while pointed out that the plane was released even as several questions remained unanswered. Crucially, the origin of the cargo and its destination were doubtful. Was it a covert operation of some other country’s agency that was exposed accidentally by Indian agencies?
    Suspicion is that part of the weapons could be US-made sophisticated weapons and were being procured by China for “reverse engineering”. This is a process by which China even engineered, rather “copied” Russian fighter aircraft a few years ago. Some of this could be the very latest in weaponry and could alter the regional balance and may spell trouble form India.
    It is still not clear as to why did the plane not reveal its cargo or its point of destination (the city) in China. Two days ago, External Affairs Minister SM Krishna had accepted the plea of the UAE government that it was a “technical error”. It was only on landing here that the pilot declared his cargo.
    The plane was carrying rifles, explosives and combat missiles. It has carrying capacity of more than 85 tonnes and was packed to the top, said a source. The plane cargo hold was not secured and sealed as is required under Indian law for aircraft carrying such cargo.
    Agencies also believe that the cargo may not have been loaded in the UAE and the needle of suspicion is pointing to another country. It is not sure if the plane flew in to Kolkata directly from the UAE or had a halt en route.


    http://www.tribuneindia.com/2009/20090911/main3.htm
     
  15. ZOOM

    ZOOM Founding Member

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    According to Times Now as per the inputs from the Intelligence sources, UAE Military Cargo plane carrying arms and ammunition were all happens to be belonging to US Armed forces which was sold to the UAE. All those arms and ammunition were meant for Non-PLA element in troubled regions of China. Wheather, was it in the knowledge of US Authorities is yet to be acertained.
     
  16. RPK

    RPK Indyakudimahan Senior Member

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    UAE aircraft takes off for return journey after refuelling

    Kolkata
    : The cargo plane of UAE's Air Force, which was detained in the city last week, Sunday left for Abu Dhabi on its return journey from China after making a technical halt here.

    The C-130 Hercules aircraft which had touched down at the NSC Bose international airport here yesterday afternoon for refuelling left for Abu Dhabi at 10.55 am, airport sources said.


    The plane had 10 crew members, including the pilot.

    The China-bound plane was detained at Kolkata airport here for over four days since September 6 as the documentation submitted prior to its arrival for a scheduled transit halt had not disclosed that it was carrying arms and ammunition.
     

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