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EK to observe FAA Iraq/Iran Bans?

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EK to observe FAA Iraq/Iran Bans?

Old 8th Jan 2020, 06:19
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EK to observe FAA Iraq/Iran Bans?

The US FAA has just put out a Notam banning US carriers from Iranian airspace, and they already had restrictions on Iraqi airspace. The Media are saying the new 'ban' applies to both countries. FAA Bans US Flights over Iran, Iraq

Does EK take heed of such restrictions? Although the US FAA does not have control of EK routings this warning must surely be heeded? The potential for 'mistakes' resulting in the downing of a civilian jet are very serious now - indeed it may already have happened with the Ukrainian jet in Tehran.

Surely as a wise precaution all civilian flights must route around these territories until things cool down (hopefully).

I have family members about to travel with EK, and it's bad enough imagining them flying into Dubai right now, but even more worrying to think of them routing through 'hot' airspace on the way in and out. Could EK ever recover from the downing of a fully laden A380 by a missile (which they were warned about)?

Can the EK guys here tell us what's happening on routes from Dubai to Europe and vice versa?
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 06:34
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Flight Radar shows the 3 standard congo lines through Iraq and Iran as populated with the morning wave as per normal.

The silence from EK management is deafening. An email saying that the reason you haven't heard anything, is because we know more than everyone else, and we're busy looking at it closely, is hardly as reassuring as it was probably supposed to be.

Last edited by Visual Procedures; 8th Jan 2020 at 06:59.
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 06:38
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code shares are considered. So if EK are code sharing with a U.S carrier, then it would be subject to any restrictions imposed by the FAA.

Another question is what will QR do if Iraq and Iran airspace becomes restricted? Can't go south (Saudi), west (Saudi and Egypt). North (Iran & Iraq) is the only to Europe and Nth America.
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 06:52
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Over 1600 pax are due to be flying out to DXB (many, if not the majority are flying in on EK from the UK, the EU and USA) to join and embark on to the Cunard liner RMS Queen Mary 2 there on its World Cruise that leaves Southampton on Jan 10th for the Gulf and Dubai, on it's way 'down under'...

The Ship registered in Bermuda (a B.O.T.) and flies the Red Ensign is a huge UK asset.
I would imagine Cunard are right now burning the midnight oil as to whether to allow her to venture into the region.
The UK have just sent 2 more Destroyers to protect UK assets in the Gulf.

However, to 'can' the call at Dubai, and then what to do with over 1600 pax flying in to get on her (plus maybe 1600 getting off) is a logistical nightmare scenario.

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Old 8th Jan 2020, 07:15
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rog747
Put her in to Muscat in Oman, and fly them in there, as you could easily route in over Saudi would be my bet ,(better country and more interesting than Dubai anyway IMHO). As for EK they normally fly over both Iraq and Iran and I would not see that changing unless things get considerably more active. I am a very regular passenger on that route (back to MAN on Friday), and that is the normal way to and from DXB, with occasional excursions over Jordan and Beirut in my experience.

Kind regards
Mr Mac
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 08:05
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For EK to continue to operate over Iran and Iraq in this situation is a plain gamble with the lives of their passengers!
For QR this is a disaster!

Iran threatens to attack any country which has American bases in the area if USA retaliates, and points directly at DXB. It also effects nearly all other countries in the area, Oman, Iraq, Kuwait, Qatar (not likely), UAE, Saudi Arabia.
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 08:56
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Originally Posted by Visual Procedures View Post
Flight Radar shows the 3 standard congo lines through Iraq and Iran as populated with the morning wave as per normal.

The silence from EK management is deafening. An email saying that the reason you haven't heard anything, is because we know more than everyone else, and we're busy looking at it closely, is hardly as reassuring as it was probably supposed to be.
Maybe cuz there is no situation, not for EK nor any other ME carrier. Move along slave..... They're closely monitoring the status of it, I'm "sure"...
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 10:23
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What happened to the UIA 737 is perhaps more of a concern given so much traffic is being routed through Iran now.

I am of course no investigation expert but the focus does seem to be changing from technical failure to 'interference' from the Iranians. The picture of part of the aircraft with small shrapnel like holes is rather compelling.
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 10:25
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Originally Posted by Mr Mac View Post
rog747
Put her in to Muscat in Oman, and fly them in there, as you could easily route in over Saudi would be my bet ,(better country and more interesting than Dubai anyway IMHO). As for EK they normally fly over both Iraq and Iran and I would not see that changing unless things get considerably more active. I am a very regular passenger on that route (back to MAN on Friday), and that is the normal way to and from DXB, with occasional excursions over Jordan and Beirut in my experience.

Kind regards
Mr Mac
I'm afraid the rhetoric has all ramped up a bit today -

Iran + Hezbollah has publicly advised that it will attack Dubai and Haifa if US retaliates against Iran to this morning's attacks on the US Army bases in Iraq...

Cunard's liner RMS Queen Mary 2 sails in 2 days from SOU via Haifa and Suez to Dubai with calls in Jordan and then on to Muscat

Has Cunard made any statement yet? - seems not....

Last edited by rog747; 8th Jan 2020 at 10:38.
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 11:48
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Routes over Tehran and Bagdah FIRs ...

At this stage, I would like to know if those complex escape routes will be reviewed while flying over Iran and Iraqi with several Americans or their allies on board.

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Old 8th Jan 2020, 11:56
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Originally Posted by rog747 View Post
I'm afraid the rhetoric has all ramped up a bit today -

Iran + Hezbollah has publicly advised that it will attack Dubai and Haifa if US retaliates against Iran to this morning's attacks on the US Army bases in Iraq...

Cunard's liner RMS Queen Mary 2 sails in 2 days from SOU via Haifa and Suez to Dubai with calls in Jordan and then on to Muscat

Has Cunard made any statement yet? - seems not....
rog 747
Will have to see which route I come back on Friday. My bet will be over Iraq /Iran as the route over Jordan and Iraq in my experince seems a liitle constrained for the volume of traffic coming up from the Gulf.
Kind regards
Mr Mac
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 13:02
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Originally Posted by Mr Mac View Post
rog 747
Will have to see which route I come back on Friday. My bet will be over Iraq /Iran as the route over Jordan and Iraq in my experince seems a liitle constrained for the volume of traffic coming up from the Gulf.
Kind regards
Mr Mac

i hope your optimism will remain.
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 13:36
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SOPS
Cursory look at flight radar shows 20 + A380 / 777 from the ME3 overflying Iraq and Iran border area never mind the smaller stuff. Pretty sure I will be straight and level in that area at circa 34,000ft on Friday, unless over Jordan / Lebanon. I am always glass half full type, comes from working in ME and Africa

Kind regards
Mr Mac
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 15:18
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The Ship registered in Bermuda (a B.O.T.) and flies the Red Ensign is a huge UK asset.
A "huge UK asset" owned by Carnival Corp of the US, of course!

I see the rhetoric going the other way (thankfully) - the Iran attack last night was to appease the angry populace, seems to have either missed the mark completely or caused minimal damage/zero casualties (despite their claims to the contrary).
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Old 8th Jan 2020, 17:25
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Originally Posted by rog747 View Post

Cunard's liner RMS Queen Mary 2 sails in 2 days from SOU via Haifa and Suez to Dubai with calls in Jordan and then on to Muscat

Has Cunard made any statement yet? - seems not....
As the QM2 is not due in Dubai until the end of the month why would they need to take any decisions now? Plenty of time to see what develops before it enters the region.
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Old 9th Jan 2020, 16:07
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Last time there was restrictions on flying over Iran, EK were one of the later observers of the ban.

At one point right as they put out a press release saying they were not routing over Iran, I was on a flight doing exactly that! The irony was not lost as the news ticker tape.on the A389 JC bar tv screen said as much... risked a write up to pull out my phone and snap a pic. Unfortunately lost when said phone went kaput, would have made for an interesting @ to the company on Twitter after I resigned!
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Old 10th Jan 2020, 18:03
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Smile

Originally Posted by SOPS View Post
i hope your optimism will remain.
Sops
Straight and level over Iraq this afternoon and no Gin spilt. Also noted a number of other ME3 carriers there. It was discussed in the Bar as you might imagine, but nobody seemed overly concerned, maybe down to the Sipsmith,s !!!
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Old 20th Jan 2020, 02:53
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Some discussion from a Reuters article:

Gulf carriers fly over Iraq, Iran after military action deters others

January 19, 2020

By Alexander Cornwell

KUWAIT (Reuters) - Qatar Airways, Emirates and several other Gulf airlines still fly in Iraqi and Iranian airspace and to cities in both countries, even as other international carriers have rerouted planes since the United States and Iran traded military strikes.

Executives and analysts said carriers in the Gulf, a major transit stop between European and Asian destinations, have few alternative routes to choose from in an area where much of the airspace is kept clear of civilian aircraft for military use.

In the latest flare up, a U.S. drone strike killed a top general in Iraq on Jan. 3 and Iran fired missiles at U.S. targets in Iraq on Jan. 8. In the tense aftermath, Iran's air defenses accidentally shot down a Ukrainian airliner.

Gulf carriers have grown into major airlines even as regional tensions in recent decades erupted into conflict. Rerouting flights hurts profits, they say, although they also insist that they take every precaution to keep passengers safe.

"Iranian airspace is important for all carriers in this region," said Adil al-Ghaith, Emirates' senior vice president, commercial operations, Gulf, Middle East and Iran.

Dubai-based Emirates and sister carrier flydubai together serve 10 cities in Iran and Iraq, and have continued to use the airspace of both countries for other flights.

Kuwait Airways and Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways have continued using Iranian and Iraqi airspace.

"We will continue to fly to Iran because Iran is an important country to us and it is our neighbor and we want to serve the people of Iran," Qatar Airways Chief Executive Akbar al-Baker said on the sidelines of a Kuwait air show.

REROUTING

Qatar has forged closer economic ties with Iran since 2017 when neighboring Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and other Arab states cut relations with Doha in a diplomatic row.

The Qatari state carrier turned to Iranian airspace to keep its network that flies through its Doha hub operating.

At the same time, many other international carriers have rerouted flights to avoid Iraq and Iran since the military strikes this month, including Lufthansa <LHAG.DE>, Air France <AIRF.PA>, Singapore Airlines <SIAL.SI> and Qantas <QAN.AX>.

Some regional carriers have also changed their routes. Bahrain's Gulf Air has redirected European flights away from Iraqi airspace and now flies longer, more fuel consuming routes over Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

"We want to take the safest option even if it costs us a little bit more for a period of time. We can live with that," Gulf Air Deputy Chief Executive Waleed Abdulhameed al-Alawi told Reuters.

The UAE regulator told its carriers -- Emirates, Etihad, flydubai and Air Arabia <AIRA.DU> -- this month to "evaluate flight path risks" although it said it was up to the airlines to make the final decision on the routes they chose.

"Gulf carriers face a big challenge but that doesn't mean that risks can be taken - even if that inflicts damage on the business model," independent aviation consultant John Strickland said.

Ukrainian International Airlines flight 752, bound for Kiev, was shot down in error after taking off from Tehran on Jan. 8, killing all 176 people aboard. Iran said on Saturday it was sending the black boxes to Ukraine.

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