Turkey’s Airspace ‘Reopened’ to Armenian Airline

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YEREVAN (RFE/RL) — An Armenian airline announced on May 30, that Turkish authorities have allowed it to resume regular flights to Europe through Turkey’s airspace.

The private carrier, FlyOne Armenia, cancelled the flights to Paris and another French city, Lyon, about a month ago, saying that its aircraft were banned from flying over Turkey without any explanation. The continuing war in Ukraine left it without alternative, commercially viable overflight routes.

In a statement, FlyOne Armenia said both twice-weekly flight services will resume on June 17. The company did not say whether it has taken any action in response to the Turkish ban.

The airline earlier asked the Armenian passage Civil Aviation Committee to help lift the ban. Citing the absence of diplomatic relations between Armenia and Turkey, the committee in turn appealed to the Armenian foreign ministry and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to deal with the issue.

The ban did not apply to FlyOne Armenia Yerevan-Istanbul flights that were launched in February following the start of Turkish-Armenian negotiations on normalizing bilateral relations.

Turkey had banned all Armenian aircraft from its airspace in September 2020 three weeks before the outbreak of the Armenian-Azerbaijani war over Nagorno-Karabakh. Although Armenia did not retaliate against the move, Turkish planes reportedly stopped flying over Armenia during the six-week war.

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FlyOne Armenia was set up last year by Armenian and Moldovan investors. According to Armenian media reports, it is controlled by individuals linked to Khachatur Sukiasyan, a wealthy businessman and pro-government parliamentarian.

 

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