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Number of flights via Kazakhstan triples after European bans on Russian airlines

The number of flights through Kazakhstan's airspace tripled to more than 450 on Monday after European bans on flights by Russian airlines, Kazakh air navigation company Kazaeronavigatsiya said. Photo: AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert.

The number of flights through Kazakhstan's airspace tripled to more than 450 on Monday after European bans on flights by Russian airlines, Kazakh air navigation company Kazaeronavigatsiya said. Photo: AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert.

Published Feb 28, 2022

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ALMATY - The number of flights through Kazakhstan's airspace tripled to more than 450 on Monday after European bans on flights by Russian airlines, Kazakh air navigation company Kazaeronavigatsiya said.

The company said in a statement it was prepared for an increased workload and would service all flights.

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The closure of EU airspace to Russian airliners and the prospect of Russia shutting out airlines in response knocked airline shares on Monday, including Finnair, which cut its guidance and saw its shares tumble 21%.

Shares in European airlines and airport operators were down 3-6% in early trade.

Without access to Russia's airspace, carriers will have to divert flights south while also avoiding areas of tension in the Middle East.

For Finland's national carrier that could mean a loss of business as it uses a route across Russian skies from Europe to Asia via its hub in Helsinki.

In Asia, Singapore Airlines said on Monday it was suspending all services between Singapore and Moscow until further notice for "operational reasons".

Korean Air, Japan Airlines and Japan's ANA Holdings said, on Monday, they were continuing to use Russian airspace but had no plans to add flights to Russia or Europe to replace flights cancelled by European carriers.

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Passenger demand to Japan and South Korea has been low due to Covid-related travel restrictions.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Monday that the escalation of Russia's military operations in Ukraine was leading to rising human rights violations and that the global body was monitoring them with teams on the ground.

"The escalation of military operations by the Russian Federation in Ukraine is leading to escalating human rights violations," Guterres said in a recorded speech at the opening of the Human Rights Council in Geneva. "We must show all people in Ukraine that we stand by them in their time of need."

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In the same speech, Guterres said that a report due to be published later on Monday by a UN panel on adaptation to climate change represented "another death knell for the world we know", and urged compliance with the 2015 Paris accord.

Reuters

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