Pakistan opens airspace for all civilian traffic

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Pakistan opened its airspace for all civilian traffic this morning, effectively removing the ban on Indian flights that were not allowed to use the majority of its airspace since the Balakot air strikes in February.

Pakistan's Civil Aviation Authority has issued a notice to airmen, stating that with immediate effect Pakistan airspace is open for all type of civil traffic on published Air Traffic Service routes.

The move is expected to give a major relief to Air India, which suffered a huge financial loss of around 491 crore rupees as it had to re-route its various international flights due to the closure of the Pakistan airspace.

Pakistan had fully closed its airspace on February 26 after the Indian Air Force struck a Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist training camp in Balakot in retaliation to the Pulwama attack.

Since then, the neighbouring country had only opened two routes, both of them passing through the southern region, of the total 11.

On its part, the Indian Air Force had announced on 31st May that all temporary restrictions imposed on the Indian airspace post the Balakot strike had been removed. However, it did not benefit most of the commercial airliners and they were waiting for Pakistan to fully open its airspace. (AIR NEWS)

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