Qatar Airways likely to access new flight routes

Qatar Airways is expected to have access to three contingency routes over international waters in early August, after delegates at a UN-led meeting on Monday discussed air corridors for Doha following a rift with its neighbors’.

The closed-door meeting organized 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.

The chief executive of Qatar Airways has made his feelings clear in that ICAO should declare the measures against Qatari air traffic to be illegal. “We have legal channels to object to this,” he said. “ICAO should heavily get involved and put their weight behind this to declare this an illegal act.”

Qatar had asked the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to intervene after its national carrier was denied access to the airspace of Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates as part of economic sanctions.

Due to the ban imposed, Qatar Airways has to take long routes to continue its long-haul flight operations. The Doha-based airline will bear the loss of almost 52 Gulf flights every week which accounts for 30 percent of its revenue. UAE, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia are the destinations from where Qatar Airways derives 18 percent of its capacity.


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