More European countries are closing the airspace to Russian planes

More European countries are closing the airspace to Russian planes

France, Norway, Italy, the Netherlands, Ireland and Austria are the latest to announce bans

France and Norway have announced that they will close their airspace to Russian aircraft in the midst of Moscow’s military action in Ukraine, joining a growing list of European countries that have already imposed restrictions on Russian airlines. Moscow has promised a mutual response.

“France will close its airspace to all Russian aircraft and airlines from tonight. On the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Europe is responding with total unity,” French Transport Minister Jean-Baptiste Djebbari said on Twitter.

Norway’s Foreign Minister Anniken Huitfeldt announced that Norway, after consulting with its Nordic neighbors, will also close its skies to Russian aircraft.

“Shocking Russian attacks on Ukraine overnight. Ireland will go to shut down Irish airspace for all Russian aircraft. We encourage other EU partners to do the same,” Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney tweeted on Sunday morning.

Austrian Transport Minister Leonere Gewessler said Austria “supports an EU-wide airspace blockade for Russian aircraft”, and that “all Russian planes” from its airspace will be “immediately blocked”.

Danish Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod has issued a similar statement and announced that “Denmark will close its airspace to Russian aircraft”. He added that his country would “push for an EU-wide ban”.

On Saturday night, the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure announced that Transport Minister Volker Wissing “supports the blockade of German airspace for Russian aircraft” and had “ordered everything to be prepared for this.”

In addition, the German airline Lufthansa canceled all upcoming flights to Russia and announced that “flights that are in Russian airspace” would “leave it again soon.”

Finnish Transport Minister Timo Harakka also announced that his government will close Finland’s airspace to Russian aircraft on Saturday.

Italy, the Netherlands, Iceland, Belgium, northern Macedonia, Denmark and Sweden have also announced that they are shutting down their skies for Russian aircraft. They are the latest in a series of European countries to have closed their airspace to Russian aircraft, including the United Kingdom, Poland, Bulgaria and the Czech Republic, among others.

Russia responded by closing its own airspace to the countries.

On Sunday, Russia’s federal air transport agency said that the “unfriendly decisions by the aviation authorities of Latvia, Lithuania, Slovenia and Estonia” had meant that Russia would impose its own flight restrictions on these countries.



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