MOSCOW, RUSSIA – Russia has closed its airspace to all aircraft registered in the UK. All British aircraft are no longer allowed to fly to or over Russia. This also applies to flights over Russia to destinations in Asia. The Russian Federal Air Transport Agency has announced this in responce to a British ban on Aeroflot flights to Great Britain.
The British government imposed a series of sanctions on Russia on Thursday after it invaded Ukraine. One of the sactions was the suspension of the license of Russia’s flag carrier Aeroflot to operate flights to and from the UK. Other Russian airlines are also being tackled, Secretary of State for Transport Grant Shapps said. They are also no longer allowed to use British airspace.
“I’ve signed restrictions prohibiting all scheduled Russian airlines from entering UK airspace or touching down on British soil. Putin’s heinous actions will not be ignored, and we will never tolerate those who put people’s lives in danger,” Shapps said on Twitter.
The Russian countermeasure mainly affects British Airways. Flights from the British flag carrier to and from Asia often cross Russia. Detours can cost considerably more time and fuel, although parent company IAG said it already made the decision to avoid Russian airspace, before the Russian sanction.
According to IAG CEO Luis Gallego, this has had limited consequences so far. It should be noted that air traffic to Asia is still at a much lower level than before the corona crisis due to strict corona measures in countries such as China and Hong Kong.
Head photo: Tony Hisgett (CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons)
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