The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) of the United Kingdom followed the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and banned Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) from operating flights in and out of the country.
The ban, announced on July 1, 2020, is effective immediately, reads a statement released by the CAA. Pakistan International Airlines operated six routes to the United Kingdom: one to Birmingham Airport (BHX), three to London Heathrow Airport (LHR) and two to Manchester Airport (MAN).
While the ban is effective immediately, the affected airline released a statement on social media that its flights from and to Islamabad, Pakistan would operate as intended. Pakistan International Airlines is scheduled to fly flight PK785 from Islamabad to London Heathrow Airport (LHR) and flight PK786 from LHR to Islamabad.
PK785 Islamabad to London Heathrow &— PIA (@Official_PIA) June 30, 2020
PK786 London Heathrow to Islamabad
for 01 July 2020 will operate as per intended schedule.
“The UK Civil Aviation Authority is required under law to withdraw PIA’s permit to operate to the UK pending EASA’s restoration of their approval that it meets international air safety standards.”
EASA’s ban comes after Pakistan’s lawmakers revealed a report, in which they found that “a large share of pilot licenses issued in Pakistan are invalid,” an EASA spokesperson told AeroTime. The suspension came into effect on July 1, 2020, and the airline is prohibited from operating flights in European air space for six months.
PIA has the option to appeal the decision and, according to local media, is already in contact with the European agency.
The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) suspended the licenses of 27 Pakistani pilots after the Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority (PCAA) revealed daunting news that 40% of Pakistani pilots held “fake” licenses. Pakistan International Airlines, meanwhile, suspended 150 of its 426 pilots.