Ukraine International Airlines-UIA (Kiev) and other other Ukrainian airline have been banned by Russia from using Russian airspace in retaliation to sanctions by the European Union due to the on-going conflict between Russian-backed rebels in eastern Ukraine and the military of the Ukraine. Russia is reportedly considering restrictions on other European airlines for their trans-Siberian flights after Aeroflot’s subsidiary Dobrolet (2nd) (Moscow) was grounded by EU sanctions due to the Ukrainian conflict.
The airline issued this statement:
UIA is deeply concerned with destructive actions of the Russian authorities and their controversial stand on transit flights of Ukrainian airlines banned from transit over the Russian territory.
Russia’s unilateral actions of banning flights force UIA to significantly lengthen its air routes from Ukraine to the East. This will lead to increase in operating costs by 15-20%, as well as to flight delays, which will cause significant discomfort to passengers.
According to the Main Air Traffic Management Center of the Unified Air Traffic Management System of the Russian Federation, the Russian authorities refuse processing UIA’s application to perform flights from Kiev to Kazakhstan, Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan through permitted entry points to the airspace of the Russian Federation.
UIA informs that it is forced to operate flights on lengthened routes, and expresses apologies to all of its passengers and partners for the discomfort caused due to a fault of the Russian authorities.
The company is deeply concerned about the fact that the Russian authorities are trying to use air transport as a tool for political pressure, cynically ignoring the interests of thousands of citizens from dozens of countries being the UIA passengers.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Former United Airlines Boeing 767-322 ER UR-GEA (msn 25280) arrives in Bangkok.