Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) has launched a passenger airport in the strategic island of Greater Tunb in the Persian Gulf.
A Tuesday report by the IRIB News said that IRGC and Iranian civil aviation officials had travelled to the Greater Tunb onboard a first passenger flight to the island to open a new runway in its Imam Ali airport.
With a surface of just over 10 square kilometers, the Greater Tunb is one of the three Iranian islands that overlook the Strait of Hormuz on the mouth of the Persian Gulf.
Nearly a fifth of the global crude oil supply passes through the Strait of Hormuz which is controlled by Iran and the neighboring Oman.
Iran has repeatedly rejected territorial claims by the United Arab Emirates about the Greater Tunb and the two other nearby islands.
Head of Iran’s Civil Aviation Organization (CAO) Mohammad Mohammadi Bakhsh said the new runway Greater Tunb’s airport will facilitate travel to the island from major business hubs in southern Iran, including from Bandar Abbas.
He said CAO had issued all permissions required for take-off and landing of the passenger planes in the airport.
The official added that the airport will soon accommodate round the clock flights to various destinations across Iran.
The Imam Ali Airport in Greater Tunb was launched by the IRGC in 2010. The airport’s new runway is 2,150 meters long and is capable of handling small passenger planes like ERJ-145.
The facility is located some 130 kilometers (80 miles) from an international airport in the Iranian port city of Bandar Abbas on the Persian Gulf coast.