Ukraine shut down its airspace for passengers on Thursday. due to a risk to safety. Europe’s aviation regulator was also warning against the dangers of flying over the bordering areas from Russia and Belarus due to military operations.
Russian president Vladimir Putin authorised a military operation in the eastern part of Ukraine in what was believed to be the beginning of conflict in Europe.
The website of the organization Ukraine State Air Traffic Services Enterprise stated that the country’s airspace was shut for civilian flights from the hour of 0045 GMT on Thursday. the suspension of air traffic services.
The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) declared that airspace within Russia as well as Belarus that is within 100 nautical miles from their border with Ukraine could pose security risk.
“In particular there is a chance of deliberate targeting and the misidentification of civilian aircraft,” the agency said in a bulletin for conflict zones.
“The possibility of the possibility of the use of a broad range of airborne and ground combat systems pose a significant danger to civil aviation operating at any altitude and at all flight levels.”
The industry of aviation has taken more attention to the dangers conflict poses to aviation ever since Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was destroyed by a missile over the eastern region of Ukraine in 2014.
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EASA stated that Russia’s defense ministry has issued Ukraine an urgent message alerting of the risk to flight safety because of the use of military weapons and equipment beginning at the time of 0045 GMT and requested the Ukraine’s air traffic control agency to put an end to flights.
Websites which had shown intelligence-gathering flights over or near Ukraine as the West deliberately showcased support by transmitting detectable signals in recent weeks showed empty space as aircraft left and Ukraine was declared a conflict zone.
The early morning flight traffic spanned the entire country, forming crowded corridors that ran to either the east or north.
A El Al flight from Tel Aviv to Toronto took a sudden turn out of Ukraine’s airspace just around the time it was closing according to flight tracking site FlightRadar24 revealed.
The LOT Polish Airlines flight from Warsaw to Kyiv was also diverted back to Warsaw at the same time.
Just hours before, Safe Airspace, which was established to provide security and information on conflict zones following the crash of MH17 stated that it had increased its risk levels in Ukraine in order to “do not travel”.
They also cautioned about the possibility of a cyberattack targeting Ukrainian air traffic controls.
Russia announced on Thursday that it would suspend domestic flights between and to some airports in the vicinity of the border with Ukraine including Rostov on Don, Krasnodar and Stavropol, until March 2.
Russia has also shut down some airspaces within the Rostov sector “in order to provide security” for flights in civil aviation an announcement to airmen read.
Prior to Ukraine was informed of the restrictions on airspace, Britain, Canada, France, Italy and the United States had instructed their airlines to stay clear of certain airspaces above the eastern Ukraine and Crimea however they stayed from imposing a complete ban.
Germany’s Lufthansa stopped flights to Ukraine beginning on Monday. It joined KLM that had stopped flights.
This week, two Ukrainian airlines reported problems getting insurance for certain flights, while foreign airlines began to avoid Ukraine’s airspace after Russia put up a massive army along its border.