Iran ready to open skies to passing flights: Official
An Iranian aviation official says the Islamic Republic is ready to open its skies to the passing international flights heading from northern Europe to East Asia after a Malaysian jet went down over eastern Ukraine.
On Tuesday, Deputy CEO for Aeronautical Operations at Iran Airports Company (IAC) Ebrahim Shoushtari said Iran responded positively to a request by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to offer its airspace as an alternative route for the flights from northern Europe destined for East Asia.
Malaysia Airlines has already shifted Amsterdam-Kuala Lumpur flights into the Iranian airspace, Shoushtari added.
On July 17, Malaysia’s Boeing 777 passenger plane en route from the Dutch capital of Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur crashed in eastern Ukraine, leading to the death of all 298 passengers on board.
The location has been the scene of intense fighting between pro-Russia protesters and Ukrainian military forces over the past months. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko had said the Boeing 777 may have been shot down.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said on July 18 that the government of the territory in which the tragedy had happened bears responsibility for it.
Earlier this month, Iran’s Civil Aviation Organization (CAO) ordered national airlines to reroute flights around eastern Ukraine airspace, saying it is prepared to open the country’s airspace to international flights after the deadly incident.
Leading airlines, including Air France, British Airways, Lufthansa, Turkish Airlines and Russian airline Transaero have also said they would avoid airspace over eastern Ukraine.