Air France said it had to cancel this flight “for operational reasons linked to bypassing Belarusian airspace requiring a new authorization from the Russian authorities to enter their territory”.
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A flight between Paris and Moscow was canceled on Friday, May 28, several days after a Ryanair aircraft was intercepted and forced to land in Minsk (Belarus). Air France clarified that it was “for operational reasons linked to bypassing Belarusian airspace requiring a new authorization from the Russian authorities to enter their territory”, which the company did not obtain.
The previous flight on Wednesday did not take place for the same reasons, leading the French transport ministry to call on Russia to respect the “principle of reciprocity” governing bilateral relations.
Flight cancellations are only due to “technical questions”, said Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, for whom it is above all “to ensure aviation safety”. “When planes (…) bypass Belarus, they ask to fly to different places which are totally uncoordinated, which leads to technical problems“, added Dmitry Peskov, assuring that Russia has “no reason to have new problems” with the European Union.