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Reroutes and Cancellation Following the Ukraine Airlines Flight Shot Down In Iran

A Boeing 737 Has Crashed in Iran Killing 180

After news that Ukrainian Airlines flight 752 may have been shot down by an Iranian missile, airlines around the world are avoiding Iraqi and Iranian airspace – leading to many reroutes and cancellations.

U.S. Prohibitions

The United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) posted a statement outlining restrictions for U.S. airlines, “The Federal Aviation Administration issued Notices to Airmen (NOTAMS) tonight outlining flight restrictions that prohibit U.S. civil aviation operators from operating in the airspace over Iraq, Iran, and the water of the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman. The FAA will continue closely monitoring events in the Middle East. We continue coordinating with our national security partners and sharing information with U.S. air carriers and foreign civil aviation authorities.”

American Airlines and Delta Airlines say that they do not operate any flights in that area and will not be affected by the FAA order. Delta CEO Ed Bastian said, “We actually don’t fly over Iran, Iraq, Syria, anytime. We constantly make certain that we stay clear of any potential conflicts, not when they actually start to arise, but actually in advance of that.

Reroutes and Cancellations

Many airlines that operate flights over Iran and Iraq have been rerouting them around the countries. Singapore Airlines has not flown over Iraq since 2012 but has had to reroute their flights away from Iranian airspace. They explained in a statement, “the new routes do not significantly change flight times for these flights.”

Other airlines, such as Qantas and LOT Polish Airlines, have also started adjusting flight plans since the accident. LOT explained in an email, “All LOT planes flying from Warsaw to Delhi, Colombo, and Singapore, as well as charter flights performed by LOT to Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh, Goa, and Phuket use alternative routes.” Qantas said their routes would be adjusted “until further notice.” Lufthansa has changed their routes and canceled all flights in and out of Tehran, but may resume them on January 20th. Lufthansa said in a statement, “We remain in constant contact with the national and international authorities and will decide on a daily basis on the operation of the flights and their organization.”

As of now, many major carriers, including Lufthansa, Emirates, Ukrainian Airlines, and flydubai, have canceled flights into and out of Tehran, as well as other airports in the affected airspace. However, many airlines have continued operations into these countries, including Qatar, China Southern, and Turkish Airlines, all of which had flights landing in Tehran today.


The reroutes will not affect flight departure times, but may add additional time to accommodate longer flight paths.