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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Russian Aid Flight Stranded for 3rd Day




YEREVAN, Armenia -- Grounded for a third day, Russian ultranationalist Vladimir Zhirinovsky fumed at the United States on Tuesday while awaiting permission to take a plane loaded with medicine to Iraq.


International flights are not permitted to Iraq unless the United Nations sanctions committee grants special approval. But Zhirinovsky decided to go ahead with the trip and left Moscow on Sunday before receiving the green light.


The plane, carrying about 200 people and some 20 tons of aid, has been sitting on the tarmac at the airport in the Armenian capital since arriving. There was no word on when the committee might hand down a decision, and Zhirinovsky blamed the Americans for the delay.


The 200 passengers include about 50 Russian lawmakers and scores of journalists who were growing increasingly restless while they cooled their heels in Armenia.


In New York, UN officials said Monday that the request for special permission had been put on hold.