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Russian media: Two incidents involving civilian aircraft reported in one day

by Nate Ostiller December 1, 2023 6:26 PM 2 min read
An Airbus A321-211 aircraft of Russian airline Aeroflot in long-term parking in Geneva in March 2022. Swiss sanctions banned Aeroflot from using Swiss airspace. (Fabrice/Coffini/ AFP)
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Two Russian civilian airplanes experienced technical malfunctions that resulted in emergency landings on the same day, the Russian media outlet Interfax reported on Dec. 1.

A flight from the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad to Moscow was forced to land prematurely in St. Petersburg, and another flight from Moscow to the far east city of Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk suffered a drop in cabin pressure and had to make an emergency landing.

No one was injured in either incident, and both planes eventually landed safely.

The incidents highlighted the increasingly apparent impact of Western sanctions on Russia's airlines, as it was not the first time that incidents involving equipment malfunction on civilian airplanes were reported.

Western sanctions have included a ban on the ability of Russian airlines or Russian-owned airplanes to use EU airspace, as well as prohibiting the export of aviation-related technology.

The impact has radically transformed the nature of Russia's airlines, forcing the vast majority of routes to become only domestic.

The safety of Russian airlines has also deteriorated as companies scramble to find spare parts.

The Russian state-controlled media Kommersant reported in May 2023 that 2,000 flights had been recorded by planes using expired parts, according to comments by Viktor Basargin, the head of the Federal Service for Supervision of Transport (Rostransnadzor).

Russia's Foreign Ministry officially filed a complaint with the U.N.'s International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) on Oct. 11, saying that the sanctions "jeopardized the safety of international civil aviation."

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