The civil aviation authority said on Tuesday, Pakistan’s airspace has been reopened to civil aviation with immediate effect, after months of restrictions imposed in the stalemate with India earlier in this year.
According to a notice to airmen (NOTAMS) published on the authority’s website, “With immediate effect Pakistan airspace is open for all type of civil traffic on published ATS (Air Traffic Service) routes”.
An official at the authority, reached by telephone, confirmed that the change was in effect.
Pakistan closed its airspace in February after having stalled with India following an attack by a Pakistan-based militant group in a police convoy in Kashmir, controlled by India, which killed 40 paramilitary policemen.
Earlier, Aviation Secretary Shahrukh Nusrat said: “The Indian government had asked us to open the airspace. We conveyed our concerns that first India must withdraw its fighter planes placed forward. We are ready to open our airspace if India de-escalates.”
Pakistan is in the middle of a vital aviation corridor and airspace restrictions have affected hundreds of commercial and cargo flights every day, increasing passenger flight time and airline fuel costs.
The announcement came hours after United Airlines Holdings Inc said it was extending the suspension of its flights from the United States to Delhi and Mumbai in India until October 26, citing continued restrictions of Pakistani airspace.
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