FAA prohibits U.S. Airline Flights Over Iraq

FAA prohibits U.S. Airline Flights Over Iraq


The Federal Aviation Administration prohibited U.S. Airlines Friday from flying over Iraq because of safety concerns about military conflict.

The ban came the same day U.S. military forces began Airstrikes against militants in northern Iraq. A previous warning urged Pilots to fly at least 30,000 feet above Iraq because of the conflict between Iraqi security forces and militants associated with the Islamic State.

The update prohibits Flights because of the potentially hazardous situation created by the armed conflict. The FAA said the prohibition will be reviewed at the end of the year.

Flight warnings gained greater attention after Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was shot down over Ukraine, where pro Russia separatists are Fighting government forces.
The FAA also suspended U.S. flights to Israel for 36 hours  when a rocket fell near the airport in Tel Aviv.
FAA warnings are often followed around the world, as when the European Aviation Safety Agency strongly recommended airlines avoid Tel Aviv temporarily.

The Lufthansa group of airlines suspended flights to Irbil in northern Iraq until Tuesday. The group's Austrian Airlines usually flies daily from Vienna and Lufthansa flies twice a week from Frankfurt. The Airlines also said they would detour around Iraq for Flights to Asia and the Middle East.

The safety of passengers and crews remains the company's highest priority, Lufthansa said in a statement.

Conflict zones have become a growing concern to Aviation during the last year. At a safety conference of the Air Line Pilots Association on Thursday, Claudio Manno, the FAA's assistant administrator for security, said the agency had issued, reviewed or updated six special regulations and 10 warnings to Pilots about conflict zones during the past year.


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