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Mexico dispatches discarded presidential jet to Tajikistan

A luxury presidential plane which Mexico had been trying to offload for more than four years has finally arrived in its new home - Tajikistan.

President López Obrador made the sale of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner one of his campaign promises, calling it a symbol of previous governments' excesses.

But the specially-outfitted plane proved hard to shift and an attempt to raffle it off failed.

It was finally sold to the Tajik government for $92m (£73.7m).

The jet took off from California, where it had been in storage, and arrived in the Tajik capital, Dushanbe, early on Monday.

The plane was originally purchased in 2012 by the president at the time, Felipe Calderón, for $218m (£175m). It was then used by Mr Calderón's successor, Enrique Peña Nieto.

Mr López Obrador vowed to never set foot in it. He has been using commercial flights since he took office.

However, the sale of the plane was beset by problems.

While the plane has a luxurious interior, including a presidential bedroom and marble and mahogany finishings, the fact that it was modified to carry only 80 passengers makes it an extremely expensive mode of transport per passenger.

It went on the market on 2 December 2018, a day after Mr López Obrador was sworn in. When no buyer was found, he suggested raffling off.


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