Global Airlines Rush to Avoid Iraqi, Iranian Airspace After Missile Strike

Russia tells its air carriers to avoid flights over Iraq, Iran and the Gulf

Reuters
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A man takes a photo of the arrivals board with the cancelled fight from Tehran after Ukrainian 737-800 plane crashed on the outskirts of Tehran, Iran, at Borispil international airport outside Kyiv, Ukraine, Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020.
A man takes a photo of the arrivals board with the cancelled fight from Tehran after Ukrainian 737-800 plane crashed on the outskirts of Tehran, Iran, Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020Credit: AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky
Reuters

The Russian Federal Air Transport Agency, Rosaviatsia, told Russian air carriers to avoid flights in the airspace of Iraq, Iran, the Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, Russian news agencies reported on Wednesday.

"Due to information on existing security risks for international civil aircraft flights, Rosaviatsia recommends until further notice not to use the airspace over the territories of Iran, Iraq, the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman for Russian civilian flights, including transit flights," RIA news agency quoted the Rosaviatsia statement as saying.

Germany's flagship carrier Lufthansa is also cancelling its daily flight between Frankfurt and Tehran due to the situation in Iran, a spokesman said on Wednesday.

He added that Lufthansa was also cancelling its next planned flight - on Saturday - to Erbil in Iraq.

Several other major airlines said on Wednesday they were re-routing flights to avoid airspace over Iraq and Iran after the Federal Aviation Administration banned U.S. carriers from the area following an Iranian missile attack on U.S.-led forces in Iraq. 

Here is a rundown of measures taken by carriers so far:

CANCELLED FLIGHTS:

Germany's Lufthansa cancelled its daily flight between Frankfurt and Tehran.

Dubai-based Emirates Airline cancelled a return flight to Baghdad.

United Arab Emirates airline flydubai cancelled a flight to Baghdad.

REROUTING:

France's airline KLM Air France suspended flights over Iraqi and Iranian airspace.

Norwegian Air Shuttle said it was looking at alternative routes for its Dubai flights departing from Scandinavia later on Wednesday.

Vietnam Airlines has rerouted flights

Taiwan's largest carrier China Airlines will not fly over either country.

Malaysia Airlines does not fly over Iraqi airspace and said it would avoid Iranian airspace.

Singapore Airlines Ltd said flights would be diverted from Iranian airspace.

Australia's Qantas Airways Ltd adjusted routes to avoid both countries' airspace, adding up to 50 minutes to Perth-London flights and requiring it to reduce passenger numbers to carry the necessary fuel.

Russia's aviation authority told its air carriers to avoid flights in the airspace of Iraq, Iran, the Gulf and the Gulf of Oman.

Transport Canada said Air Canada was altering its routes

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