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NEWS BRIEFS

Balkan conflict creates major increase in flights over Slovakia

The head of the Slovak Aviation Authority,Roman Biro, said in early April that the average number of flights through Slovakia's airspace has increased as the consequence of the war in Yugoslavia. Under normal circumstances, about 250 planes cross Slovakia's airspace at this time of the year, while now about 700 flights are recorded daily.

About 10 warplanes use Slovakia's airspace daily, Biro said.

In the busy summer season, about 550 planes per day generally use Slovakia airspace. The current increase is in large part due to the necessity to detour all commercial flights around the Yugoslav region, he said. According to Biro, the aviation authority is well-prepared to manage the increase in flight activity and no serious problems have occurred so far in association with the busy air corridors. In the case of an extreme increase in the number of flights, some planes can be redirected outside Slovakia, he said.

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