Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) on Wednesday issued a notice on closing the Karachi airspace partially till August 31. All international flights have been asked to avoid three aviation routes in the Karachi airspace as per the NOTAM.
However, no reasons have been provided by the CAA for the abrupt closure of the airspace.
The notification comes at a time when Pakistan’s Science and Technology Minister Fawad Khan on Tuesday said that the country is considering closing its airspace for traffic from India.
“PM is considering a complete closure of airspace to India, a complete ban on use of Pakistan land routes for Indian trade to Afghanistan was also suggested in cabinet meeting, legal formalities for these decisions are under consideration… Modi has started, we’ll finish!” Khan tweeted.
Pakistan opened its airspace for all civilian traffic on July 16 removing the ban on Indian flights that were not allowed to use a majority of its airspace since the Balakot airstrikes in February.
Flights from across the world were either cancelled or rerouted, since the closure was announced on February 27.
India had said that 600 flights per day were impacted due to the closure of Pakistani airspace.
Meanwhile, following the abrogation of Article 370, Pakistan had earlier this month closed its airspace partially, after its decision to downgrade diplomatic relations with India.
Three out of 11 routes between India and Pakistan were closed.
However, according to national carrier Air India, its westbound operations have remained impacted much by Pakistan’s decision to partially close its airspace.
As tensions between the two nations escalated once again after Centre scrapped Article 370 of the Constitution, Pakistan decided to downgrade diplomatic relations with India over the Kashmir move. It expelled Indian High Commissioner Ajay Bisaria and suspended trade with India.
In a series of retaliatory measures, Islamabad suspended the Samjhauta Express and Thar Express services operating between Pakistan and India.
It also stopped the Lahore-Delhi ‘Dosti’ bus service.
Meanwhile, India has slammed Pakistan for the unilateral decisions taken in respect to the bilateral relations and urged the neighbouring nation to “review the steps taken so that normal channels for diplomatic communications are preserved”.