An Israeli soldier aboard a plane from Uzbekistan landed in Iran last week and spent nine hours on the ground before safely departing, the military cleared for publication Thursday.
According to the Israel Defense Forces, the 19-year-old Russian-speaking soldier, who serves in a non-sensitive position in the IDF’s Northern Command, had been on vacation visiting family in Uzbekistan.
The civilian flight from the Uzbek capital Tashkent to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates last Thursday was diverted due to a medical condition of one of the passengers. It landed at Shiraz International Airport.
The plane spent around nine hours in Iran before taking off again without incident, the IDF said.
Hebrew-language media reports said passengers disembarked and were sent to wait in the terminal. While on the ground the soldier called her parents, who then notified her commanders. The details were eventually passed on to senior defense officials, who notified Prime Minister Yair Lapid, as the Israeli cabinet was holding a meeting on signing a maritime border agreement with Lebanon.