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    Jul 29, 2014

    Emirates to avoid Iraqi airspace


    DUBAI'S Emirates airline said yesterday it will avoid Iraqi airspace, as the government in Baghdad struggles to contain Islamic insurgents who have captured vast areas of the country.

    After Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 was shot down earlier this month by a ground-to-air-missile in eastern Ukraine, airlines around the world have been rethinking flight routes to avoid airspace over countries facing conflicts.

    Emirates, along with Europe's largest airline Lufthansa and other rivals, has called for an airline summit to discuss the industry's response to the downing of an airliner, saying international security protocols should be reviewed.

    "Emirates is taking precautionary measures and is working on alternative routing plans for flights using Iraqi airspace," the Gulf airline said in a statement.

    "We are closely monitoring the situation, along with international agencies."

    Currently, Iraq falls under the flight path from Asia to Europe, raising security fears for airline operators of an attack similar to the one on the Malaysian jetliner in Ukraine.