British Airways and Air France Suspend Flights to Tehran

Both companies cite commercial viability as the reason for the suspension

British Airways logos on tail fins at Heathrow Airport in west London, Britain, February 23, 2018.
REUTERS/Hannah McKay

British Airways said on Thursday it is suspending flights between London and Tehran because they are not commercially viable. The French arm of Franco-Dutch airlines group Air France KLM (AIRF.PA) said Thursday it will stop its flights to Tehran in September for business reasons.

The London-Tehran route was reinstated in the wake of a 2015 accord between western powers and Iran under which most international sanctions on Iran were lifted in return for curbs on the country’s nuclear programme.

Three months ago however, President Trump withdrew Washington from the deal, blasting it as flawed and reimposing sanctions to choke Iran’s economy and force it to renegotiate or change direction. The U.S. government is due to reinstate sanctions on Iran in November, which has pushed some international companies to end their activities in the country.

British Airways, which is owned by Spanish-registered IAG, said its last outbound flight from London to Tehran will be on Sept. 22 and the last inbound flight from Tehran will be on Sept. 23.

“We are suspending our London to Tehran service as the operation is currently not commercially viable,” British Airways said in a statement.

Air France will stop flying to Tehran from September 18 because of “the line’s weak performance,” a spokesman said.