Aeroflot Flight 111 yesterday violated the Canadian Airspace prohibition mere hours after it was implemented. Federal body Transport Canada tweeted earlier today that they are aware of the incident and will be launching a review of Aeroflot and air navigation services provider NAV CANADA.
The flight was travelling from Miami, Florida, to Moscow and took off at 15:12 ET, according to FlightRadar24. In the course of its path, it passed over regions of Atlantic Canada. There are no direct flights between Russia and Canada, but several Russian flights cross over Canadian airspace to get to other countries.
In a statement to Reuters, NAV CANADA confirmed that flight 111 passed over Canadian Airspace. The Canadian regulator said that the aircraft operator declared the flight as a “humanitarian flight” as it entered the airspace, which even under normal circumstances requires special handling by air traffic control. They added:
“We are currently cooperating with Transport Canada to investigate the occurrence, and are working with neighbouring Air Navigation Service Providers to support rerouting of aircraft prior to them entering Canadian-controlled airspace,”
Canada’s airspace ban
Canada has become the latest country to impose airspace sanctions on Russia. The Minister for Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, announced yesterday that Canada’s airspace will now be closed to all all Russian-owned, chartered or operated aircraft. The minister commented:
“All of Canada is united in its outrage of President Putin’s aggression against Ukraine. In response, we have closed Canadian airspace to Russian-owned or operated aircraft. The Government of Canada condemns Russia’s aggressive actions, and we will continue to take action to stand with Ukraine.”
It is likely that Russia will now ban Canada from using its airspace as it has for other countries in what has been described as a “tit-for-tat” response. So far, the UK, Czechia, Poland, Bulgaria and the Baltics have all banned Russia from their respective airspaces. In every case, Russia has retaliated with a mutual ban.
What are your thoughts on Airspace bans for Russia? Do you think they will be effective? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!