Amid raising Indo-Pak tensions, all flights between India and Pakistan have been cancelled on Wednesday. Furthermore, several other international flights, inlcuding that for the gulf cities and the United States (US) flying over Pakistan returned or diverted route to avoid Pakistani airspace. The development came after Pakistan, in the wake of the escalating tensions with India, closed its airspace for commercial flights and suspended flight operations across major airports, including in Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi, for an indefinite period.
Pakistan's Civil Aviation Authority made the announcement after the director general of Inter-Services Public Relations, the military's media arm, acknowledged the closure of Pakistan's airspace due to the prevailing security situation.
Civil Aviation Authority spokesman Mujtaba Baig said the flight operations in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces have been suspended for an indefinite period. He said the flight operations from and to Lahore, Sialkot, Faisalabad, Multan and Rawalpindi/Islamabad airports have been suspended.
The planes which had left from foreign destinations for these airports have been diverted to the safer airports.
Initially, India also closed nine airports in Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Punjab for civilian air traffic and the entire airspace north of New Delhi was vacated on the day of rapidly escalating tensions between India and Pakistan.
However, Aviation watchdog DGCA later said operations at the nine airports, which were shut earlier in the day, have resumed "as of now". The move comes amid escalation of tension between India and Pakistan after IAF carried out strikes on terror bases in Pakistan on Tuesday.
Adding fuel to the already worse situation, Pakistan jets on Wednesday intruded into Indian air space in the Rajouri and Poonch sectors. The flare up in the cross-LoC shelling, which was initiated by Pakistani troops in early hours of Wednesday, has resulted in security forces and other establishments being put on a heightened alert.