Ukraine-Russia flight ban to begin despite last minute talks

Ukraine-Russia direct flight ban to go ahead despite last minute efforts to negotiate solution

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Last minute talks on an upcoming Ukrainian ban on direct flights to Russia have been fruitless and the ban will go forward on Sunday, on the date announced by Kiev in early October.

The sanctions on direct flights have been initiated by Ukraine in protest against Russia’s annexation of Crimea and its support for pro-Russian armed rebels who want to establish independent states in eastern Ukraine.

Russia has expressed strong disapproval of the move, and announced it will retaliate in kind.

The ban means longer, more expensive flights through third countries for up to 70,000 passengers a month.

Russia has argued that the move by Ukraine, a country from where many citizens frequently travel to Russia, is not smart.

However, since two-thirds of Ukrainian passengers use Russian airlines, it will hurt Russia’s air transport industry as well.

Russia’s transport minister has estimated there will be a $110m loss in ticket sales for the countries.

TRTWorld and agencies