The Directorate General of Civil Aviation on Saturday said that all Indian airlines have decided to avoid flying over the part of Iranian airspace that has been affected by the conflict between the United States and Iran, PTI reported. Flights will be suitably re-routed, the aviation regulator added.
The decision has been made to ensure safe travel for passengers, the DGCA said.
The strained relationship between the US and Iran worsened earlier this week after Iran shot down an American spy drone near the Strait of Hormuz. While Iran claimed the US had violated its airspace, America insisted its drone had been shot down over international waters. On Friday, US President Donald Trump ordered and then cancelled military strikes on Iran.
Meanwhile, Etihad Airways, a United Arab Emirates carrier, also suspended operations through Iranian airspace over the Straits of Hormuz and the Gulf of Oman, ANI reported on Saturday. The airline said it will use alternate flight paths to and from Abu Dhabi until further notice.
The decision was made after consultation with the UAE General Civil Aviation Authority and other airlines from the UAE, Etihad Airways said.
American aviation major United Airlines had on Thursday suspended flights between Newark and Mumbai amid rising tensions between the United States and Iran.
“Given current events in Iran, United Airlines Link has conducted a thorough safety and security review of our India service through Iranian airspace and decided to suspend our service between New York/Newark and India (Mumbai) beginning today evening,” United Airlines had said in a statement.
The US Federal Aviation Administration had on Friday decided to ban airlines from flying over the Strait of Hormuz and the Gulf of Oman. The FAA warned of a “potential for miscalculation or misidentification” in the region after Iran brought down the US spy drone.
German airline Lufthansa has also said it is no longer flying planes over the Strait of Hormuz or the Gulf of Oman. The airline said flights over the two water bodies were suspended on Thursday based on its own assessment of the situation. However, the carrier said its flights to Tehran will continue.