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UAE protests to UN over Qatar flight ‘interceptions’

By AFP - Jan 18,2018 - Last updated at Jan 18,2018

DUBAI — The UAE said on Thursday that it has filed a complaint with the United Nations over Qatar's "interception" of two passenger planes en route to Bahrain this week.

Protests have been filed over "Qatar's threat to the lives of civilians through its interception of two UAE aircraft on a routine flight to Bahrain via internationally accredited airlines, and with all necessary approvals and permits", the official news agency WAM reported.

The UAE on Monday said Qatari fighter jets had flown within 1.2 kilometres of two flights descending towards Bahrain's international airport, drawing a swift denial from Doha. 

Qatar and the United Arab Emirates have clashed over alleged airspace violations in recent weeks, as a diplomatic crisis in the Gulf enters its eighth month.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt cut all ties with Qatar in June over Qatar's alleged ties to extremists and Shiite Iran. 

Qatar, which denies the accusations, is banned from using the airspace of the four states under the boycott, although UAE airlines continue to operate flights through Qatari airspace. 

Abu Dhabi is now looking at re-routing flights to Bahrain to avoid Qatari airspace.

Bahrain has also said it plans to file a complaint over Monday's incident to the International Civil Aviation Organisation, a specialised agency of the United Nations.

 

For its part, Qatar has accused UAE fighter jets of violating its airspace both in December and this month, and it has filed formal complaints with the UN.

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