ANKARA (Combined Sources)–Turkey’s national airline company has been preparing to launch charter flights to the Armenian capital, Today’s Zaman reported on Monday.
According to Zaman, Turkish Airlines (THY) recently sent unofficial letters to the Turkish Directorate General of Civil Aviation (SHGM) and the Turkish Foreign Ministry, asking for information regarding charter flights by Armenian national air company Armavia from Yerevan to Istanbul and the Mediterranean coastal city of Antalya.
THY asked about the arrangemen’s and agreemen’s involving these flights. In response, the SHGM said the flights have been taking place with the Foreign Ministry’s approval and that permission for Armavia’s charter flights to Turkey is renewed every two or three weeks.
In the coming days, THY is expected to send another letter to the Turkish Foreign Ministry asking whether launching charter flights to Yerevan would "comply with the national interests" of the country. The final decision will be made after receiving the Foreign Ministry’s response outlining Ankara’s stance on the issue.
Currently, Atlasjet, a private Turkish airline company, has been conducting charter flights between Istanbul and Yerevan.
A senior Turkish official told Today’s Zaman that THY has been assuming an important role in Turkish foreign policy. Describing THY as "an important tool of Turkey’s policy of strategic initiatives," the official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the company always requests the Foreign Ministry’s view when it prepares to launch a new flight route abroad.