Aviation body rejects India’s complaint against Pakistan for Modi’s airspace usage

International aviation body on Tuesday rejected New Delhi’s complaint against Pakistan’s refusal to allow Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s request to travel to Saudi Arabia, reported Indian publication Firstpost.

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“The Convention on International Civil Aviation (Chicago Convention), which ICAO helps governments to cooperate under, only applies to the operations of civilian aircraft and not to state or military aircraft,” the publication quoted the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) spokesperson saying.

He further clarified that flights carrying state leaders are labelled as state aircraft due to which they do not fall under ICAO provisions.

On Monday, New Delhi approached the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) after Islamabad prohibited Indian premier Narendra Modi to use Pakistan’s airspace, Indian news website NDTV reported.

Officials, who spoke to the Indian media on the condition of anonymity, say that overflight clearances should be granted by other countries under the guidelines set by ICAO.

The official added, “overflight clearances are sought, and granted by other countries as per prescribed ICAO guidelines and India will continue to seek such overflight clearances. Separately, we have taken up the matter of such denial with the relevant international civil aviation body.”

Pakistan on Sunday denied Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s request to use its airspace to show solidarity with Kashmir.

The decision was taken to respect the ‘black day’ being observed on Sunday against Indian atrocities in Indian-Administered Kashmir, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said.

The Foreign Office conveyed the message to the Indian High Commission and said its relations with India are dependent on how India treats Kashmiris.

PM Modi is scheduled to visit Saudi Arabia to meet King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud in Riyadh on October 29.

Last month, Pakistan had rejected the Indian prime minister’s request to fly over its airspace to go to Germany. It kept the human rights violations in Kashmir and India’s attitude over Kashmir in mind and turned down India’s request.

It is the third time in recent weeks that Islamabad has refused to allow Indian leaders to use its airspace.

Earlier, Islamabad turned down PM Modi’s request to use the country’s airspace to travel to New York to attend the UN General Assembly meeting in September.

Pakistan had also rejected the Indian president’s request to use the Pakistani airspace to travel to Iceland.

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