Pak neither closed its airspace nor re-routed Indian flights: Civil Aviation Authority
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After media reports suggested that Pakistan had closed its airspace for Indian flights, the spokesperson of Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority Mujtaba Baig clarified it has neither closed its airspace for India nor re-routed any route for the Indian flights, reported PTI.
“There has been no change to the notice to airmen (NOTAM) and all flights are being operated as per schedule issued earlier. Pakistan has neither closed its airspace for India nor re-routed or closed down any route for the Indian flights,” he was quoted as saying.
Spokesperson of the foreign office Dr Mohammad Faisal also said that Pakistan had not banned its airspace for India. “We have not banned our airspace for India. It is open for Indian flights,” he told reporters in Islamabad, reported PTI.
On Wednesday, it had been reported that Pakistan issued a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) announcing partial closure of its airspace in the Lahore region due to “operational reasons”. Pakistan’s decision to shut off its airspace came a day after the Bill to bifurcate Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories was passed by the Parliament.
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan after a meeting with National Conservation Strategy (NCS) Wednesday announced that is was downgrading diplomatic ties with India, and asked New Delhi to withdraw its High Commissioner from Islamabad. The country also said it would not be sending its High Commissioner-designate to India.
The last time Pakistan closed its airspace was in February after the Balakot strikes which resulted in severe operational disruptions for airlines across the globe by the means of extended flight times and increased flying costs running into hundreds of crores of rupees.
(With inputs from PTI)