Algeria shuts airspace to Moroccan aircraft

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Algeria has closed its airspace to all civilian and military Moroccan aircraft, according to a presidential statement, the latest move in a diplomatic row between the two North African countries. 

The decision by the country’s supreme security council was taken on September 22, 2021 following a meeting chaired by President Abdelmadjid Tebboune. The ensuing statement, reported by various media, cited “the continuation of provocations and hostile acts,” and said the closure took immediate effect.

Reuters cited a source at Royal Air Maroc as saying the impact would be insignificant. The source said the airspace closure would affect only 15 flights a week and that those flights could be rerouted over the Mediterranean.

The two countries are involved in a dispute over western Sahara, which is claimed by both sides. Algeria broke off diplomatic ties with Morocco on August 24, 2021. 

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