Pakistan decides to let PM Modi's plane fly over its airspace to Bishkek

Pakistan on Monday decided in principle to let Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s aircraft fly over its airspace to Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan where he has to attend the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit on June 13-14, where his Pakistani counterpart Imran Khan would also be present.

Pakistan had fully closed its airspace on February 26 after an Indian Air Force (IAF) strike in Balakot. Since then, it has only opened two routes, both of them pass through southern Pakistan, of the total 11. India requested Pakistan to let Prime Minister Modi’s aircraft fly over its airspace to Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan.

The official confirmed to PTI that the Imran Khan government has approved in principle the Indian government’s request to let Prime Minister Modi’s aircraft fly over the Pakistani airspace to Bishkek.

“The Indian government will be conveyed about the decision once the procedural formalities are completed. The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) will also be directed to notify the airmen subsequently,” the official said, adding Pakistan was hopeful that India would respond to its offer for peace dialogue.

He said Prime Minister Khan has recently written a letter to his Indian counterpart stressing Pakistan requires a solution for all geopolitical issues including Kashmir between the two neighbouring states.

The official further said Pakistan is still optimistic that India will respond to peace offer despite the fact both premiers were not meeting at the sidelines of the SCO Summit.

No bilateral meeting has been planned between Prime Minister Modi and his Pakistani counterpart on the sidelines of the SCO Summit. Pakistan had given special permission to India’s then external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj to fly directly through Pakistani airspace to attend the SCO Foreign Ministers’ meet in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, on May 21.