Europe’s air traffic control agency, Eurocontrol, told airlines on Friday that "the latest information from Malta indicates that Tripoli (air control center) does not accept traffic."
The Libyan government closed its airspace on Friday to all traffic, reacting to a U.N. resolution authorizing the use of force and a no—fly zone to protect the Libyan people from attacks by forces loyal to strongman Moammar Qadhafi.
Europe’s air traffic control agency, Eurocontrol, told airlines on Friday that “the latest information from Malta indicates that Tripoli (air control center) does not accept traffic.”
The Brussels—based agency’s map of air traffic over Europe and the Mediterranean showed that Libyan airspace was off limits.
On Thursday, the U.N. Security Council authorized “all necessary measures” to stop attacks on civilians in Libya - including strikes by sea and air - hours after Qadhafi vowed to launch a final assault and crush the weeks—old rebellion against him.
Eurocontrol said on Friday it had no information on how long Libya’s airspace would be closed, but the agency said it had halted all air traffic to Libya for 24 hours.
“We applied a zero traffic rate for the whole day,” said a Eurocontrol official who spoke on condition of anonymity because she was not authorized to speak to the news media.
She said the closure could also be affected by decisions made on Friday by NATO, the North Atlantic military alliance.