A notice to airmen announced the ban of civil flights within Ukraine airspace until the end of Thursday.
Qatar Airways, Wizz Air, Turkish Airlines, and other airlines have canceled flights to Kyiv scheduled on Thursday.
The flights halted “due to a potential hazard to civil aviation,” according to the notice, updated on the Federal Aviation Administration website. Early Thursday morning local time, Russia started an attack on its neighbor.
It indicated a high risk to flight safety in the Donbas region owing to the usage of firearms and military equipment. Flying through adjacent airspace in Russia and Belarus poses significant safety hazards, according to the European Union Aviation Safety Agency.
The regulator stated, “There is a risk of both intentional targeting and misidentification of civil aircraft.”
The flight restriction notification was issued just hours before Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that his soldiers would invade Ukraine. Also, explosions were recorded in Ukrainian cities such as Kyiv, the capital, shortly after Putin’s declaration.
Early Thursday morning, local time, the European Union Air Safety Agency avoided Ukrainian airspace, including within 100 nautical miles of Belarus and Russia’s borders.
Airlines Canceling Ukraine Flights
Several major airlines, notably Lufthansa and KLM, have already canceled Ukraine flights owing to fears of a Russian invasion.
Around the time when the order was issued, LOT Polish Airlines Flight 755, bound for Kyiv, returned to Warsaw.
Wizz Air and Ryanair, which still flying to Ukraine from the UK, announced that all flights had been canceled.
Previously, only limited flights were allowed along Russia’s eastern border with Ukraine. Since Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was shot down in the region, US aviation authorities have restricted US planes from flying over eastern Ukraine.
Because insurance companies refused to cover the flights, some Ukrainian airlines were compelled to cancel flights. Or relocate jets out of the country last week on the orders of aircraft lessors.
Some carriers have altered their schedules.
Read More: Russia Invasion of Ukraine