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World News

Armenia says airspace still open to civil aircraft

YEREVAN (Reuters) - Armenia’s airspace remains open to civil aircraft, the Civil Aviation Committee head said on Thursday, denying a report by Russia’s Interfax news agency that Armenia had declared a no-fly zone over its territory and Nagorno-Karabakh.

Armenia, Azerbaijan and Russia said on Tuesday they had signed a deal to end the military conflict over the Nagorno-Karabakh region after more than a month of bloodshed.

Under the deal, Azerbaijan will keep territorial gains made in the fighting, including the enclave’s second city of Shusha, which Armenians call Shushi. Ethnic Armenian forces must give up control of a slew of other territories between now and Dec. 1.

Civil Aviation Committee head Tatevik Revazyan said that authorities had been doing their best to ensure that Armenia’s airspace was safe for civil aircraft.

“Now the war is over and the airspace continues being open,” Revazyan told Reuters.

Armenia’s defence ministry said earlier on Thursday that airspace of Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh was a “no-fly zone, except for military and registered civil aviation”.

The ministry spokeswoman Shushan Stepanyan made that statement in response to media reports claiming that a Turkish drone broke into Armenia’s airspace.

“These reports ... are fake,” Stepanyan said in a statement.

Reporting by Nvard Hovhannisyan; Writing by Margarita Antidze; Editing by Nick Macfie

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