World Cancellation of European flights to Moscow is purely "technical",...

Cancellation of European flights to Moscow is purely “technical”, according to the Kremlin

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648x415 avion compagnie british airways aeroport moscou 18 septembre 2020

A British Airways plane at Moscow airport, September 18, 2020. – : Vladimir Gerdo / TASS / Sipa USA / SIPA

The cancellation of several European flights to Moscow for lack of green light from Russia for a new route bypassing Belarus is only due to “technical questions”, assured the spokesman for the Kremlin on Friday.

“The air authorities will give the necessary clarifications, but these are technical questions,” Dmitry Peskov told reporters, adding that it was above all “to ensure air safety”.

Too many requests

The EU decided on Monday to ban its airspace and airports to Belarusian planes and to recommend that European companies avoid Belarusian airspace, in reaction to the hijacking of an airliner and the arrest of an opponent who was on board. Since then, three flights from EU capitals to Moscow have been canceled for lack of authorization for new routes avoiding Belarus. The most recent is an Air France Paris-Moscow flight canceled on Friday morning.

“When planes (…) bypass Belarus, they ask to fly to different places that are absolutely not coordinated, which leads to technical problems,” added Dmitry Peskov, assuring that Russia has “no reason to have new problems ”with the European Union (EU). For its part, the Russian federal agency Rossaviatsia said in a statement that “the increase in the time required” to grant new flight authorizations is due to “the increase in the number of requests from airlines”.

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