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EU bans Pakistan International Airlines from flying to Europe for six months

The European Union Air Safety Agency (EASA) has suspended the flight operations of Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) to European Union (EU) nations for a period of six months, the PIA said on Tuesday. The suspension will take effect on July 1 at 12 am (UTC time), said the statement.

The statement added that the airline is in “touch with EASA to allay their concerns and hopes that the suspension will be revoked with our CBMs soon”.

Taking to micro-blogging site Twitter, the official account of PIA issued a statement saying, “EASA has suspended PIA’s permission to operate to EU member states for 6 months w.e.f July 1, 2020: 0000Hrs UTC. PIA is in touch with EASA to allay their concerns and hopes that the suspension will be revoked with our CBMs soon.”

The move follows the grounding of 262 pilots whose licences Aviation Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan termed “dubious”, reported Pakistani media Dawn. “EASA has temporarily suspended PIA’s authorisation to operate to the EU member states for a period of 6 months effective July 1, 2020, with the right to appeal against this decision,” Dawn quoted a PIA statement. It added that PIA would discontinue all its flights to Europe temporarily.

All passengers booked on its flights to European destinations will have the option to either extend their bookings to a later date or get a full refund, it added. “PIA is in contact with EASA to allay their concerns and to take necessary corrective measures along with filing the appeal against the decision,” Dawn added further.

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