[Ed. – Not a particularly meaningful gesture on the EU’s part, and Russia will probably face them down in the end. Moscow wants to make the point worse than Brussels does. But we’ll see.]
The European Union has urged airlines to avoid using the airspace over Russia’s ally Belarus following Sunday’s forced landing of a plane to arrest journalist Roman Pratasevich.
Austrian Airlines thus tried to avoid Belarusian airspace for Flight OS601 from Vienna to Moscow, but its proposed route change was refused by Russia, and Austrian Airlines canceled the flight.
“The Russian reaction is absolutely incomprehensible to us,” Austria’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement on the matter, according to Reuters. “The Austrian Foreign Ministry communicated this to the Russian ambassador today. The Austrian ambassador in Moscow also presented this position to Russia.”
Air France found itself in a similar situation.