MANAMA, Bahrain’s Foreign Affairs Ministry on Sunday condemned the interception of an Emirati civilian aircraft “Airbus 320” by Qatari fighter jets.

The Airbus, arriving from Dammam airport to Abu Dhabi, was carrying dozens of passengers while flying over international waters on the Bahrain flight information region and fulfilling all necessary procedures.

“The ministry reiterates that these provocative and repeated acts represent a threat to passengers and endangers their lives,” said Bahrain’s statement.

Bahrain’s Foreign Affairs Ministry affirmed the right of the Kingdom of Bahrain to take all measures with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), relevant organizations and UN agencies to preserve the safety and security of civil aviation and passengers against irresponsible and illegal Qatari practices.

“The ministry stresses the full solidarity of the Kingdom of Bahrain with the United Arab Emirates in all measures taken to address these repeated Qatari violations.”

Qatar’s air force on Sunday has “dangerously” approached a passenger plane of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) international carrier Emirates Airline, Dubai daily Gulf News reported.

The passenger jet was flying on a regular flight from Dubai to Manama when it was intercepted, which was the third incident of its kind in 2018, said the report.

The EK 837 flight, which carried 86 passengers, was “followed and approached” by the the Qatari fight jets while it was entering Bahrain’s air space, according to the report.

The military aircraft then reduced its horizontal distance to less than two miles and its vertical distance to 700 feet, leaving “just a few seconds before a possible collision of the aircraft,” it added.

On March 27, the UAE said Qatari military aircraft flew “dangerously close to two UAE civil aircraft in the airspace of Bahrain”.

Earlier this year, UAE civil aviation authority said that two Emirati passenger aircraft were harassed by the Qatari air force while flying from Abu Dhabi to Bahrain.

The UAE had sent complaints to the International Civil Aviation Organization. Qatar, on the other hand, has filed on Jan. 14 a complaint to the United Nations Security Council about the violation of its air space by a UAE military fighter jet in early January, claiming it was the second time that the UAE had done so after a similar incident happened on Dec. 21, 2017.

The UAE and Qatar have been in a diplomatic rift for almost a year after the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt severed political and economic ties with the fellow Gulf state over the latter’s alleged support for terrorism and alliance with Iran, a major rival of Saudi in the region.

Source: Nam News Network