Qatar Airways expected to access contingency routes in August

Author: ReutersTue, 2017-08-01 02:12ID: 1501611593037060400MONTREAL: Qatar Airways is expected to have access to three contingency routes over international waters in early August, after a UN-led meeting on Monday discussed air corridors for Doha following a rift with its neighbors, a source familiar with the matter said.The closed-door meeting with the UN aviation agency’s governing council in Montreal, discussed contingency routes that had been planned as part of a preliminary agreement reached earlier this month, but not yet opened to Qatar-registered planes.Qatar had asked the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to intervene after its national carrier was denied access to the airspace of the Anti-Terror Quartet as part of economic sanctions.The Quartet severed ties with Qatar on June 5, accusing it of supporting terrorism. The closing of their airspace has forced state-owned Qatar Airways to fly longer, more expensive routes, prompting Doha to push for international corridors over Gulf waters currently managed by the UAE.“Within a week or so, they should have new routes,” said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the talks are private.A spokesman from ICAO could not comment on the Monday talks.On Sunday, Saudi state news agency SPA cited a statement from the Saudi aviation authority (GACA) saying they had already agreed to nine emergency air corridors, which were identified under ICAO supervision, and would be open from Aug. 1.However, Qatar’s Transport and Communications Ministry and its aviation authority denied the Quartet had taken such a decision, the state news agency QNA said.ICAO cannot impose rules on states, but regulators from its 191-member countries almost always adopt and enforce the standards it sets for international aviation.
Main category: Middle-East

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