On 23 December 2022, a day the world was busy with Christmas preparations, four ex Turkish Airlines’ Airbus A340-300s, which had been stored at Johannesburg since spring 2019 were ferried to Tehran (Iran).
The four aircraft were withdrawn from use by Turkish Airlines in late 2018/early 2019. After a few months of storage at Istanbul, they were ferried to Johannesburg in March and April 2019 and all four were registered in the Guernsey (2-REG) register on behalf of a company based in Hong Kong, called AVRO Global Limited.
The four aircraft involved are:
msn 115, 2-AVRA, ex TC-JDM
msn 180, 2-AVRB, ex TC-JDN
msn 270, 2-AVRC, ex TC-JIH
msn 331, 2-AVRD, ex TC-JII
In the original flightplan Uzbekistan was mentioned as the final destination, but once in Iranian airspace, the aircraft diverted to Tehran where they landed.
The flight numbers used for this flight used a MAN airline code. This code does not exist, but given the aircraft final destination, we assume this is a hint to its new owner ... Mahan Air. So despite the sanctions against Iran, it looks like some clandestine transaction took place and these four ex Turkish A340-300s will call Tehran home for the rest of their operational life.
Photo by Walter Heukensfeld