The World Health Organisation have tweeted an image of a Cham Wings A320 transporting vaccines despite the airline being sanctioned for ‘terror and human rights violations’.
In 2016, The U.S. announced sanctions on Cham Wings, Syria’s second-largest carrier. Privately owned by businessman Issam Shammout, Cham Wings has been blacklisted by the U.S. Department of Commerce since 2011.
Despite the airline’s private ownership, it has acted as a critical participant in the regime’s and Iran’s war effort in Syria. Treasury sanctioned Cham Wings for providing material support to entities sanctioned for proliferation and terrorism activities.
The World Health Organization (#WHO) continues to provide humanitarian assistance aid to the people of #Libya. More than sixteen tons of medicines, supplies and equipment dispatched from WHO warehouses in #Dubai have just arrived at #Benina International Airport in #Benghazi. pic.twitter.com/iwIustDyUi
— World Health Organization in Libya (@WHOLIBYA) January 11, 2021
There is certainly some irony here with this airline delivering vaccines, local media in Libya has recently reported that the Libyan Interior Ministry has warned of a health disaster after Cham Wings opened an office in Benghazi, bringing people from Coronavirus-hit areas into the eastern region.
In a statement, the Interior Ministry said Cham Wings office in Benghazi was undertaking “dubious trade activities” and bringing people who had contact with Iranians to Benghazi, saying that Iranians are now in control of all over Damascus.
According to the Libya Observer:
“The Interior Ministry said it had information that Cham Wings flights to Benghazi brought Syrian fighters and experts with links to Russian Wagner Group, terrorist Hezbollah and Iranian Revolutionary Guard members. It warned eastern Libyan commercial banks not to deal with Cham Wings and warned people not to come in close contact with any person coming on the airliner’s flights. The Interior Ministry called on the UN Support Mission in Libya and UN Sanctions Committee to document these violations and hold the perpetrators accountable.”
Defence analysts were quick to notice the irony in this too. The Open Source Intelligence Twitter account SkyWatcher Intel has also been discussing the WHO tweet, if you don’t follow them then I’d suggest you go do that now.
The WHO is basically using terrorist hardware to deliver vaccines. Amazing.
— Sierra Alpha (@skywatcherintel) January 11, 2021
Essentially, The World Health Organisation appear to be transporting COVID19 vaccines using an airline being blamed for spreading the virus and currently sanctioned for ‘terror and human rights violations’ in the Middle East.
We have reached out for comment and will update this article if we get a response.