Published: 12:17, April 15, 2024
Regional nations reopen airspace after Iran's attack on Israel
By Xinhua
Israeli Iron Dome air defense system launches to intercept missiles fired from Iran, in central Israel, April 14, 2024. (PHOTO / AP)

BAGHDAD/BEIRUT/CAIRO — Countries in the Middle East on Sunday announced the reopening of their airspace following the Iranian missile and drone attacks on Israel.

A statement by the Iraqi Civil Aviation Authority (ICAA) said that "the Iraqi airspace has been reopened to all aircraft arriving at, departing from, and crossing the country after the end of all risks that affect the security and safety of civil aviation in Iraq."

Earlier, the ICAA closed the Iraqi airspace after dozens of Iranian missiles and drones traversed Iraqi airspace en route to Israel late Saturday.

Lebanon's General Directorate of Civil Aviation announced on Sunday that the Rafic Hariri International Airport in Beirut reopened at 7 am local time (0400 GMT) after closure due to regional tensions over the past hours.

"The Lebanese airspace has been closed to all aircraft arriving, departing, and crossing Lebanese airspace, temporarily and as a precaution, as of 1 am on Sunday (2200 GMT Saturday)," Lebanese Minister of Public Works and Transport Ali Hamieh said earlier.

Jordan on Sunday reopened its airspace following Iran's attack on Israel and vowed to take all necessary steps to protect the country's security and sovereignty.

The Jordanian Civil Aviation Regulatory Commission said the airspace was reopened after reassessing the risks according to national and international standards for the safety and security of civil aviation, the state-run Petra news agency reported.

Meanwhile, the Egyptian government on Sunday denied implementing any emergency closure of airspace or air navigation, stressing all Egyptian airports are operating normally, said the Egyptian cabinet in a statement.

"The Egyptian airspace, as well as air traffic, is operating normally without interruption," said the Egyptian cabinet's media center, referring to relevant reports circulating on some media websites and social media platforms as "rumors" and "fake news."

Verifying information with the Egyptian Ministry of Civil Aviation, the cabinet clarified that all flights at Egyptian airports operate regularly according to their usual schedules, except for those heading to some countries closing their airspace.

Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps confirmed on Saturday that it launched missile and drone attacks on Israel in retaliation for the Israeli airstrikes on the Iranian consulate building at its embassy in the Syrian capital of Damascus on April 1.