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UN agency to assess airspace closure against Qatar, host talks

The United Nations aviation agency said on Wednesday it was reviewing a request from Qatar to intervene after its Gulf neighbours closed their airspace to Qatar flights, part of the region’s biggest diplomatic row and trade blockade in years.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt cut diplomatic and transport ties with Qatar a week ago, accusing it of fomenting regional unrest, supporting terrorism and getting too close to Iran, all of which Doha denies.

The International Civil Aviation Organization, a U.N. agency that regulates international air travel under the Chicago Convention, said it would host talks of ministers and senior officials from Qatar, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt at its Montreal headquarters on Thursday to seek a “consensus-based solution” that addressed “current regional concerns.”

“ICAO is presently reviewing requests from the government of Qatar to assess the flight restrictions imposed upon it by neighbouring states,” according to an ICAO statement.

SOURCE: REUTERS

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