Pakistan reopens airspace for civil aviation after five months

Photo by the Pakistan Today. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

ISLAMABAD, Jul 17, 2019, Pakistan Today. Pakistan has opened its airspace to civil aviation with immediate effect, the Civil Aviation Authority said on Tuesday, following five months of restrictions imposed in the wake of a standoff with neighboring India earlier this year, reported the Pakistan Today.

“With immediate effect, Pakistan airspace is open for all type of civil traffic on published ATS (Air Traffic Service) routes,” according to a notice to airmen (NOTAMS) published on the authority’s website.

An official at the authority, reached by telephone, confirmed to Reuters that the change was in effect.

Pakistan closed its airspace in February following the violation of its international boundary and airspace by Indian fighter jets. In March, partial operations at Pakistani airports resumed once tensions eased but restrictions continued to affect many international carriers using country’s airspace.

Both countries carried out aerial attacks over the other’s territory during the standoff and warplanes fought a brief dogfight over the skies of the disputed Kashmir region.

Pakistan lies in the middle of a vital aviation corridor and the airspace restrictions affected hundreds of commercial and cargo flights each day, adding to flight time for passengers and fuel costs for airlines.

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