Finnair’s decision is based on a recommendation by the Finnish Transport and Communication Agency to avoid Belarus airspace.

Finnair will avoid flying in Belarus airspace, beginning on Wednesday. Photograph: Tony Öhberg/Finland Today

Finnair will stop flying in Belarus airspace for the time being.

“Changes in the flight route will somewhat lengthen the duration of the flight,” the airline noted on Twitter on Tuesday morning.

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Finnair’s decision is based on a recommendation by the Finnish Transport and Communication Agency to avoid Belarus airspace.

The first flight to be affected by the route change is the flight to Turkey on Wednesday.

In practice, the affected flights include flights to Chania, Greece (Crete) and to Gazipasa, Turkey (Alanya).

On Monday, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said in a press conference that the bloc is “closing our airspace to planes from Belarus.” She also urged EU airlines to not fly over the country.

The sanctions are based on the incident of a Ryanair flight from Greece to Lithuania being forced to land in Belarus on Sunday, and a dissident journalist on board was arrested.

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