Russia has banned British airlines from landing and flying across Russian airspace.

The move was a response to the unfriendly decisions by the UK aviation authorities, according to the Russian civil aviation regulator.

The Russian flag carrier Aeroflot, as well as all other Russian carriers, were prohibited from entering the UK yesterday.

The ban came into effect as part of the sanctions imposed in response to the ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

Rosaviatsia, the Russian civil aviation regulator, stated: “This measure was taken in accordance with the provisions of the Intergovernmental Air Services Agreement between Russia and the UK as a response to unfriendly decisions by the UK aviation authorities regarding the restriction on regular flights of aircraft owned, leased or operated by a person associated with Russia or registered in Russia.”

According to Cirium data, 24 passenger flights were scheduled to depart between the UK and Russia between February 18 and February 25.

The largest air carrier was Aeroflot, which had 16 flights between London Heathrow and Moscow Sheremetyevo scheduled.

The other airline travelling between the two nations is British Airways, which has eight weekly flights between London Heathrow and Moscow Domodedovo.

Today, two Aeroflot flights and two British Airways flights between the two countries were cancelled.

In a statement, British Airways said it was alerting customers of cancelled flights and would issue full reimbursements.

“We apologise for the inconvenience, but this is clearly a matter beyond our control,” the airline said. We will continue to monitor the situation closely.”

Flight patterns between the UK, Pakistan, and India have also been modified, said Virgin Atlantic.

Flight times will be increased by 15 minutes to an hour on some routes.

The carrier expressed regret for the delays, adding: “The safety and security of our customers and people always comes first and we are monitoring the situation in Ukraine and Russia extremely carefully following the escalation of conflict.”

The Champions League final, which was supposed to be held in St Petersburg but will instead be held in Paris, has also been taken away from Russia, as has the F1 Grand Prix, which was already cancelled.


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