The International Air Transport Association (IATA) asked the governments of Panama and Venezuela to restore flights between the two countries, after they were suspended on December 13.
“This disruption could not have come at a worse time. Venezuela had very limited international air connectivity, even before covid-19,” said Peter Cerdá, IATA regional vice president for the Americas.
Venezuela had allowed flights from five countries: Panama, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Iran and Turkey. However, a few days ago they decided to suspend their operations to Panama and the Dominican Republic by order of the National Executive and the National Institute of Civil Aeronautics, after a difference in the number of weekly operations that each airline could fly between those countries.
“Our operations are canceled and subject to the corresponding government authorizations,” said Laser Airlines, one of the airlines affected by the measure, who are evaluating alternatives to serve the affected passengers on these routes.
Copa Airlines, for its part, pointed out that there is no tentative date for the reopening of its flights between Panama and Venezuela.
“Severing this link before the holiday travel season, and at a time when the demand for pharmaceuticals needed to fight the pandemic is at its peak, will have dire consequences. The travel plans will be seriously affected, ” added Cerdá.
Likewise, the Panamanian government indicated that it will not change its mind until the flights required by the Panamanian airline are authorized and the equal and fair treatment agreed in the current bilateral agreement is restored.
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