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Mahan Air (Paperback)

The Ayatollah's Air America


By Babak Taghvaee
Imprint: Key Publishing
Pages: 96
Illustrations: Over 120, colour
ISBN: 9781802825831
Published: 25th August 2023



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Established 31 years ago by means of a fleet of Soviet-made Tupolev Tu-154 passenger aircraft, Mahan Air soon turned into the largest airline of Iran. Despite being highly sanctioned by the US government and many other EU countries, Mahan Air has managed to take the place of Iran Air, Iran's flag carrier, in many of the domestic and international routes to Iran in recent years.

Under control of retired Generals of Islamic Revolutionary Guard of Corps (IRGC), the airline plays an important role in transportation of personnel and troops of the Quds Force (IRGCQF) branch of the force from Iran to Syria, Lebanon and Iraq. Within the past eleven years, thousands of IRGCQF members were deployed to Syria using passenger aircraft, such as the large fleet of Airbus A310s of the airline.

Mahan Air also serves political interests of the Iranian government in the Middle East and Latin America. The airline has had two of its A340-303s, two Airbus A340-642s and one of its Boeing 747-3B3Ms leased to flag carriers of Syria and Venezuela. Despite being heavily sanctioned , Mahan Air has not only managed to maintain its fleet of Avro Jet RJ70/85/100s, Airbus A310s, A300s, A340s and Boeing 747s but also managed to increase their numbers to a level to become the largest airline of the country, connecting it to East and Southeast Asia by means of its large fleet of long-haul and wide-body passenger aircraft.

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About Babak Taghvaee

Babak Taghvaee is an aviation journalist, historian and book author. He started his career as an aviation journalist by writing for AirForces Monthly and the Aviation Industries Magazine in 2008. Since then, he has written over 800 articles and news reports about military aviation for the magazine, as well as other brands of Key Publishing Ltd. Through his career, he has written four books about the Air Forces and Army Aviation Force of Iran and Ukraine, which were published in Austria and the UK between 2009 and 2020.

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