Qatari-owned aircraft are blocked from using the airspace of
Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates as
part of economic sanctions enforced by the four countries in
Qatar Airways is studying "the flexibility and benefit" of one
"very short route" while another route off the Egyptian coast
was "useless" to the airline, Chief Executive Akbar al-Baker
said at a Doha press conference.
Al-Baker did not say where the short route was located or when
the airline would decide if it would use the routes.
The United Nation's aviation agency said on Aug. 8 Bahrain and
the United Arab Emirates had agreed to open some of its airspace
to Qatari aircraft, according to media reports.
Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the UAE severed ties with Qatar
on June 5, accusing it of supporting Islamist militants.
Qatar has denied the allegations.
The airspace closures have forced Qatar Airways to fly longer,
more expensive routes, prompting Doha to call for the UN's
International Civil Aviation Organization to intervene.
(Reporting by Tom Finn, writing by Alexander Cornwell. Editing
by Jane Merriman)
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