Russian airline threatens to sue Canada over seized aircraft


Volga-Dnepr, Russia's largest cargo airline, has issued an ultimatum to the Canadian government, threatening to take the matter to arbitration over a seized An-124 Ruslan aircraft, Russian news agency Interfax reported on Aug. 14.

In doing so, the Russian company is trying to resolve a dispute concerning the detained cargo plane, which has been in Toronto airport since Feb. 27, 2022.

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The Russian carrier is proposing that the Canadian government resolve the dispute "amicably" in accordance with Article 9 and Canada's Policy on Encouragement and Mutual Protection of Investments from Nov. 20, 1989.

Copies of the notification were sent to the Canadian PM and several other top officials.

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"If this dispute is not resolved within six months from the time Canada receives the notification, Volga-Dnepr will officially initiate arbitration proceedings," the company said.

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The Russian airline added that it was conducting a humanitarian flight commissioned by the Canadian government, delivering COVID-19 test kits from China. However, after unloading, the plane was forbidden to leave Canadian territory due to a NOTAM (Notice to Air Missions) that bans Russian airlines from using the country's airspace.

In June, Canadian PM Justin Trudeau announced that Volga-Dnepr’s confiscated An-124 plane would be transferred to Ukraine.

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