Gulf carriers not re-routing flights yet


DUBAI, United Arab Emirates – Gulf airlines said they have not started re-routing flights through the airspace of countries bordering Syria, amid Tuesday’s reports of two missiles launched in the Mediterranean towards the Syrian coast.

While earlier reports by international media quoted Russia’s defence ministry as saying it detected the missiles at 10.16am Moscow time on September 3, other reports later clarified that the strikes were part of a joint missile test in the Mediterranean by Israel and the US.

Asked if earlier reports about the missile attacks could kick-start re-routing for airlines, Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways and Bahrain’s Gulf Air said that their contingency plans will take effect if the airspace around Syria closes.

An Etihad spokesperson told Gulf News in a statement that the carrier has drawn up “robust flight re-routing contingency plans” in the event of any airspace being closed to commercial aircraft. “Our 24-hours Network Operations Centre is constantly in communication with all air space management organisations in which we operate,” the airline stated.