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Wave Of Countries, Airlines Ground Boeing 737 Max 8 Planes After Ethiopian Air Crash


Rescuers work at the scene of the Ethiopian Airlines crash on March 11.

A wave of countries and airlines around the world have banned the Boeing 737 MAX 8 or suspended flights of the aircraft after a Ethiopian Airlines jet crashed after takeoff, killing all 157 people on board.

Kazakhstan's Civil Aviation Committee said on March 13 that it was suspending flights by the sole 737 MAX in operation in the country, while Serbia barred the planes from taking off, landing, or flying through its airspace.

The European Union, Norway, Australia, China, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Brazil, Mexico, India, and other countries said on March 12 that they were grounding the aircraft or closing their airspace to the planes until further notice.

“As a precautionary measure, EASA has published today an Airworthiness Directive, effective as of 19:00 UTC, suspending all flight operations of all Boeing Model 737-8 MAX and 737-9 MAX aeroplanes in Europe,” the 28-member EU’s aviation authority, EASA, said in a statement.

"In addition, EASA has published a Safety Directive, effective as of 19:00 UTC, suspending all commercial flights performed by third-country operators into, within, or out of the EU of the above-mentioned models,” it added.

France and Germany announced earlier that they had grounded the Boeing 737 MAX 8.

Turkish Airlines, TUI Airlines, Norwegian, and Icelandair were among flight operators who also suspended usage of the model after being involved in its second fatal accident in less than five months.

Oman and the United Arab Emirates also grounded the aircraft.

The United States, which is helping Ethiopian authorities investigate the March 10 crash near the capital, Addis Ababa, said it was too “early in the process” to ground its fleet of Boeing 737 MAX 8s.

On March 11, Boeing, the world's largest aircraft manufacturer, said that it has “full confidence in the safety” of the plane and that it will be deploying new flight control software in coming weeks for the 737 MAX.

Based on reporting by CNN, AFP, the BBC, and Kazinform