Saturday, January 11, 2020

US eases curbs on flights, India may do so too

New Delhi: The distance between India and the west could soon shrink with both America and Iran hopefully coming back from the brink of war. The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on Friday relaxed its ban on American airlines from overflying the airspace of Iran, Iraq and the waters of Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman. It has now permitted US carriers and US-registered aircraft to fly in and out of Dubai, Doha, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Sharjah and Muscat.

Aviation authorities here are closely watching the situation and could soon resume their pre-Wednesday routes between India and the west. Following Wednesday’s FAA notice to airmen (Notam) for the Gulf, the DGCA had asked Indian airlines to “reroute their flights (from affected airspaces) to ensure complete safety of passengers.”
Since then, Indian and many other international (non-US) airlines are bypassing the Iranian airspace. If the situation between Iran and US does not heat up, Indian airlines may resume flying there in a day or two, say sources.
Things changed with FAA’s Notam on Friday that allowed US carriers to fly to some airports in the region while the Tehran airspace still remains firmly out of bounds for them.
11/01/20 Saurabh Sinha/Times of India
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