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Air Zimbabwe banned from flying in European Union airspace

National flag carrier Air Zimbabwe is among 117 airlines that have been banned from flying in European Union (EU) airspace because they do not meet international aviation safety standards.

This comes after the struggling Zimbabwean airline was found in the EU Air Safety List (ASL).

The ASL, according to a UK official statement, is a list of air carriers that do not fulfill international safety standards.

“The carriers on the ASL are banned from operating to, in and from the EU (including overflight). Carriers that do not operate to the EU can also be put on the ASL, in order to warn those travelling outside of the EU about safety concerns.

“If the safety authorities of a third country are not able to fulfill their international safety oversight obligations, all the carriers of that country can be put on the ASL,” read the statement.

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“The ASL, while not popular with the affected countries and carriers, has developed into a strong and internationally recognised tool that helps improve the safety of international aviation.

“This is the case both for flights to the EU, but also for aviation outside of the EU. The ASL is also seen as a strong preventive tool, because when under scrutiny, countries tend to improve their safety oversight to avoid seeing their air carriers on the list.”

Accordingly, after the 39th update of the Air Safety List in April 2022, 117 air carriers were banned from EU skies.

These are: “90 airlines certified in 15 different States, due to a lack of safety oversight by the aviation authorities in these States;

“21 airlines certified in Russia, as well as 6 individual airlines from other States, based on safety concerns identified: Avior Airlines (Venezuela), Blue Wing Airlines (Suriname), Iran Aseman Airlines (Iran), Iraqi Airways (Iraq), Med-View Airlines (Nigeria) and Air Zimbabwe (Zimbabwe).

“Two additional airlines are subject to operational restrictions and can only fly to the EU with specific aircraft types: Iran Air (Iran) and Air Koryo (North Korea).”

Last year, it was reported that Air Zimbabwe, chalked over a US$137 million loss in four successive years which helped sink the airline deep into the abyss under the yoke of corporate malfeasance, incompetence, government interference and systemic corruption. Nehanda Radio