EASA warns of possible missile strikes on Syria

Eurocontrol is relaying a warning to airlines to exercise caution in the eastern Mediterranean due to the risk of air strikes into Syria in the next 72 hours.

On its Network Operations Portal, air navigation safety agency Eurocontrol has alerted airlines planning to fly near that airspace that the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) had issued a Rapid Alert Notification for the Eastern Mediterranean / Nicosia Flight Information Region (FIR).

This added that due to the possible launch of air strikes into Syria with air-to-ground and / or cruise missiles within the next 72 hours, and the possibility of intermittent disruption of radio navigation equipment, “due consideration” needs to be taken when planning flight operations in this area and that airlines needed to check any relevant NOTAMs.

US President Donald Trump on Monday warned of a ‘quick, forceful’ response once responsibility for the recent Syria attacks was established.

Aviation authorities in countries including the United States, Britain, France and Germany have issued previous warnings against airlines entering Syrian airspace leading most carriers to avoid the area.

The United Nations International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) which launched a web page specifically to warn about risks to aircraft operating near conflict zones following the Malaysia Airlines MH17 tragedy, has failed to issue any relevant notice, however.

Concerns over risks to civil aviation operating through known conflict zones came to the fore in the wake of the 2014 downing of Flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine.

Initially, ICAO said it aimed to serve as a single source for up-to-date assessments from states and relevant international organisations to reduce risks to civil aviation arising from armed conflict. “As it becomes populated with submissions, it will provide up-to-date information on potential risks to civil aviation arising from armed conflict,” it said at the time.

Under the Chicago Convention, each state is responsible for assessing civil aviation conflict zone risks in their territories, and for making that information promptly available to other states and airlines.

Posted in Airspace, News, Safety, Security

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