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US Airlines Barred From Flying Over Iran-controlled Airspace

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U.S. aviation authorities have ordered aircraft registered in the country not to fly over territories controlled by Iran in the wake of escalated tensions in the region.

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said it has issued a Notice to Airmen prohibiting U.S.-registered aircraft from operating over the Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman.

"All flight operations in the over-water area of the Tehran Flight Information Region (FIR) (OIIX) above the Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman only are prohibited until further notice due to heightened military activities and increased political tensions in the region, which present an inadvertent risk to U.S. civil aviation operations and potential for miscalculation or mis-identification," FAA said in a statement issued late Thursday.

It clarified that the NOTAM applies to all U.S. air carriers and commercial operators.

Also, some airlines in other countries are reportedly avoiding the potentially dangerous air route above the Strait of Hormuz and Gulf of Oman after Iranian forces shot down an unmanned U.S. surveillance drone Thursday.

Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps downed an RQ-4 Global Hawk, used for surveillance and reconnaissance by the U.S. Air Force, alleging that it violated Iranian airspace for spying.

But US denied the allegation, and said that the aircraft was attacked in international airspace over the Strait of Hormuz.

Meanwhile, the New York Times reported that an open war between the United States and Iran was averted after President Donald Trump changed his decision at the last minute to order a military attack on the Islamic nation late Thursday in retaliation to targeting its drone.

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