BEIJING ( Associated Press) – The US government has suspended 26 Chinese airline flights from the United States to China over a dispute over coronavirus controls, following a similar move by Beijing.
The US Department of Transportation complained on Thursday that Beijing violated an air transportation agreement and mistreated airlines based on a system that forced them to suspend flights if passengers tested positive for COVID-19. does.
The department said US regulators canceled seven Air China Limited flights departing from New York City and 19 other flights from Los Angeles operated by Air China, China Eastern Airlines Limited, China Southern Airlines Limited and Xiamen Airlines Limited. Gave.
According to the agency, it was the same number of flights of United Airlines, American Airlines and Delta Air Lines that had to be suspended due to Beijing’s policy to prevent the spread of infection.
The ruling Communist Party’s “zero COVID” strategy seeks to prevent the virus from crossing the country’s borders, while other countries have changed their approach to living with the disease. This has kept the number of cases down, but has disrupted transport, manufacturing and trade. Beijing is easing travel restrictions, but most foreign visitors are still barred from entering the country.
According to the Transport Department, by August 7, if nine passengers on a single flight tested positive, the airline could suspend the flight for two weeks or reduce the number of passengers to 40% of the potential total. He said that since then, companies have been required to suspend a flight when the number of positive people reaches 4% of passengers.