Update 02 Dec 2020: 

  • Improving airspace safety picture along the border between Armenia and Azerbaijan. No new reports of fighting since the peace agreement in mid-Nov. Russia and Turkey have deployed peacekeepers to make sure the peace deal holds.

  • With the conflict now over, Azerbaijan has cancelled its Notam warning of the threat posed by missiles, and has re-opened its airspace along the border with Armenia.

  • So direct crossing traffic is now technically possible again. However, for the time being, most East-West flights are currently still electing to go further north instead, connecting between Azerbaijan and Georgia’s airspace, avoiding Armenia. Waypoint BARAD is being used for Eastbound flights, and ADEKI for Westbound flights.

Given the overall reduction in risk since the end of hostilities, we now assess both Armenia and Azerbaijan on SafeAirspace.net as Risk Level 3: Caution – the only remaining official airspace warning for Armenia/Azerbaijan is that of France, who continue to advise against overflying the border region.

Previous warnings

At the peak of the conflict in late October 2020, the airspace picture looked like this:

Azerbaijan

  • Azerbaijan established a Temporary Restricted Area along the border with Armenia, which meant that all East-West airways between the two countries were effectively closed. This airspace has now reopened.
  • They also issued a Notam advising caution across the UBBA/Baku FIR due to the spillover of the conflict, with the specific warning of the threat posed by long-range missiles which they claimed Armenia had been using to target locations throughout Azerbaijan. This Notam has now been cancelled.

Armenia

  • Armenia never closed any parts of its airspace. Instead, they issued a Notam advising operators to expect tactical rerouting and short notice closures in the airspace along the border, and recommended they carry additional fuel. This Notam has now been cancelled.

Germany

  • Germany issued Notams in mid-July for both Armenia and Azerbaijan. It did not advise that overflights be restricted to a certain altitude, but instead warned of a “potential risk to aviation… from military operation including anti aviation weaponry.” This Notam has now been cancelled.

France

  • The airspace warnings issued by France were a bit different. Essentially, they said that operators should not overfly the border region except on certain airways in the far north of the UBBA/Baku FIR at FL340 or above.
  • The French Notam containing this warning was published on July 24, and although the Notam got cancelled on July 30, the warning got incorporated into the big AIC that France maintains with airspace warnings for various different countries around the world. Therefore, this warning remains in effect until further notice.

More info

For more info on airspace safety warnings, check Safeairspace.net – the Conflict Zone & Risk Database which provides a single, independent, and eternally free resource for all airspace risk warnings, so that airlines and aircraft operators can easily see the current risk picture for unfamiliar airspace.

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David Mumford

David Mumford

Opsgroup team member. International flight ops news hound.

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