The Airbus A-320 plane that crashed on a Russian airfield was reportedly “stolen” from Irish leasing company Aercap.

The leased aircraft was reportedly never returned to its Irish owners following the Russian attack on Ukraine.

The plane’s operator, Ural Airlines, said the plane’s hydraulic system failed, resulting in a crash landing near the village of Kamenka in the Novosibirsk region, RIA Novosti news agency reported.

“Russian Ural Airlines crashed an Airbus that it had stolen from Irish leasing company Aercap. There were 159 passengers and 6 crew members on board. Makes you wonder what led to the crash,” journalist Andrew Perpetua wrote separately on social media.

Watch: Irish plane makes emergency landing in Siberia

The independent Russian news agency Agentstvo said that the leased planes were actually among those that the Russian airline did not want to return to their owners after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

According to Flightradar24, the A320-200 aircraft had been in use for 20 years and had been leased from Ural Airlines since 2013.

Fortunately, according to the Novosibirsk Emergencies Ministry, all 167 people on board the plane were safely evacuated. The passengers were examined by doctors and only minor injuries were reported.

A temporary accommodation facility has been set up to look after the passengers, said the region’s governor, Andrei Travnikov.

emergency landing

According to the Telegram channel Baza, the plane triggered an alarm before making an emergency landing and images taken at the crash site showed fire damage to the plane’s right wing.

The pilot had hoped to make an emergency landing at Novosibirsk airport, but reportedly had no choice but to descend into a field in the countryside.

The dispute over the aircraft arose after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Earlier this month, involved Irish leasing company Aercap settled with another Russian airline, Aeroflot, over the apparent “theft” of 17 aircraft during the Ukraine war when sanctions were imposed.

The settlement is believed to be worth €602 million.

In a statement, AerCap said a settlement had been reached over the “stolen” aircraft.

A320 Airbus

“On September 5, 2023, we received insurance settlement cash proceeds totaling approximately EUR 602 million to fully settle our insurance claims under Aeroflot Group’s insurance policies in relation to the 17 aircraft and five spare engines leased to the Russian flag Aeroflot airline – at the time of the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

“Insurance negotiations are currently underway regarding our claims under the insurance policies of several other Russian airlines.

“However, it is uncertain whether and, if so, to what extent, these discussions will result in an insurance settlement or the receipt of proceeds from the insurance settlement.

“In particular, it remains uncertain whether the necessary approvals and funds can be obtained to enter into such further insurance contracts,” the company said in a statement obtained by Aviation Source News.

Sunday World contacted Aercap for comment on the recent incident, but none was available at the time of publication. The Airbus A-320 plane that crashed on a Russian airfield was reportedly “stolen” from Irish leasing company Aercap.

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