Reports from Moscow say Russian authorities are considering an airspace ban against European airlines that use trans-Siberian routes in retaliation for European Union sanctions that have targeted Russia's low-cost airline Dobrolyot.
The Russian daily "Vedomosti" reported on August 5 that officials in the Russian Transportation Ministry and Civil Aviation Authority were contemplating "restrictions or even a ban on transit flights by European airlines to Asia over Russian territory."
Such a move would significantly increase the cost of flights from Europe to Asia as they would be forced to take longer routes avoiding Russian airspace.
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev told Transportation Minister Maksim Sokolov and Vadim Zingman on August 5 there should be a discussion about retaliatory measures for the sanctions on Dobrolyot.
The EU imposed sanctions on Dobrolyot, run by state-controlled air carrier Aeroflot, because Dobrolyot operates flights to Crimea -- the Ukrainian territory that was illegally annexed by Russia in March.
Based on reporting by Reuters and Interfax