Some European airlines canceled flights to Ukrainian airports on Sunday after mixing up the date of introduction of the ban on scheduled passenger flights, the CFTS portal reports, citing the European Pravda publication.
Lufthansa Airlines and Austrian Airlines (both operated by the Lufthansa group) canceled some of their flights to Kyiv on Sunday and announced the cancellation of all flights on Monday.
Two flights from Frankfurt (the flights LH 1492 and LH 1494) did not depart for Kyiv on Sunday. The flights were canceled at the last moment and passengers, including transit passengers, were not warned of the cancellation. The flight OS 667 from Vienna to Kyiv, which was scheduled to arrive in the Ukrainian capital at 00:15, was also unexpectedly canceled.
Because of this, many Ukrainian citizens trying to return to Ukraine before March 17, when all regular flights to the country will be banned, are stuck at airports.
In addition, all Lufthansa flights to Ukraine (three from Frankfurt, two from Munich, and two from Vienna) were canceled on Monday.
According to the Ukrainian Foreign Affairs Ministry, the reason for the cancellation was a mistake by the airline, which mistakenly thought that the ban on flights to Ukraine was scheduled to be introduced a day earlier.
This was announced by Ukraine’s General Consul in Frankfurt, Alla Poleva. Officials from the Ukrainian consulate in Frankfurt held talks with the carrier with the aim of finding a way out of this situation. "As it turned out, Lufthansa canceled the Sunday flight and all subsequent flights because the airline apparently obtained information that Ukraine would close air links with other countries at 22:00 on Sunday," the diplomat said, adding that the carrier did not say where it obtained this inaccurate information about the date of introduction of the ban.
According to her, passengers are reporting that other European airlines are also canceling some of their flights to Ukrainian cities.
As the CFTS portal reported earlier, Ukraine will ban flights to and from all countries on March 17.