MOSCOW, December 8 (Sputnik) — A Russian cargo plane recently detained by Nigerian authorities on suspicion of arms trafficking has been released and continued on Monday its planned flight to Chad, the Russian Embassy in Nigeria said.
The plane carrying two French helicopters and flying from the Central African Republic (CAR) to Chad was detained by Nigerian authorities on Saturday after an emergency landing in the city of Kano.
"The plane has left the Kano airport, the situation has been resolved…All formalities have been cleared," Artem Romanov, the press attache of the embassy, told RIA Novosti in a phone call.
The detention of the plane caused controversial reports in the media concerning the cargo on board of the aircraft. On Sunday, the ambassador of France to Nigeria admitted French ownership of the helicopters noting that using chartered flights of different nationalities to transport military cargo was a standard international procedure used to reduce costs. Moving military helicopters between CAR and Chad was part of a French contribution to fighting terrorism in the region.
The ambassador also stated that "contrary to some press reports, there was absolutely no weapon, and no ammunition on board the aircraft" and that Nigerian authorities would let the plane fly on to Ndjamena in Chad.