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February 28, 2022

Europe and Canada close airspace to Russian aircraft

Delta cancelled its codeshare services with Russian flag carrier Aeroflot.

Understand the impact of the Ukraine conflict from a cross-sector perspective with the Global Data Executive Briefing: Ukraine Conflict

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Europe and Canada have shut their airspace to Russian airlines.

In a statement, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said: “First, we are shutting down the EU airspace for Russians. We are proposing a prohibition on all Russian-owned, Russian registered or Russian-controlled aircraft.

“These aircraft will no more be able to land in, take off or overfly the territory of the EU. This will apply to any plane owned, chartered or otherwise controlled by a Russian legal or natural person. Our airspace will be closed to every Russian plane and that includes the private jets of oligarchs.”

This announcement comes after several EU member countries said that they were barring Russian aeroplanes or planning to do so in the coming days.

A similar announcement was made by the Canadian Transport Minister Omar Alghabra to hold Russia accountable for the attack on Ukraine.

These moves are expected to intensify the pressure on the US to follow a similar course of action.

Due to the growing tension, several airlines cancelled flights in and out of Russia while many countries blocked Russian airlines.

Last week, Delta suspended its codeshare services with Russian national airline Aeroflot.

In a statement, Delta said: “We have removed our code from Aeroflot-operated services beyond Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport (SVO) and removed Aeroflot’s code from Delta-operated services from Los Angeles and New York-JFK. Accommodations will be made for customers affected by these changes.”

In response to the aviation sanctions, Russia banned flights from numerous European countries, including UK airlines.

Additionally, in a Russian attack on the Hostomel airport near Ukraine’s capital Kyiv, Ukrainian-made Antonov-225 Mriya was burnt down.

This aircraft was said to be the world’s largest cargo aeroplane.

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