The United States closed the airspace over Iranian waters in 2019. Emirates flew over the zone. Although not being a US airline, it overlooked one critical detail.
In June 2019, several merchant ships were damaged in the Gulf of Oman. The United States accused Iran of sabotage. Tensions reached a climax when the Islamic Revolutionary Guards shot down an American surveillance drone on June 20, allegedly violating Iranian airspace. Washington subsequently transferred several ships and additional soldiers to the region.
At the same time, the United States closed the airspace over the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman near the Iranian coast to domestic airlines. This way, they wanted to prevent civil aircraft from being accidentally hit in the event of an outbreak of hostilities. This has become a problem for Emirates.
Punishable in the United States
Because the gulf airline flew over the restricted zone on flights from Dubai to Tehran, it is being penalised by the US Department of Transportation. From July 1st to 19, 2019, Emirates had added the IATA code B6 of its American partner Jetblue to its Iran flights, the ministry explained in its ruling from September 29. Emirates had thus made itself liable to prosecution in the USA.
Emirates acknowledges the judgement and states the addition of the code of the American partner Jetblue was an oversight. The middle eastern airline must now pay a fine of 400,000 US dollars. However, half of this sum will be waived if it does not commit another punishable offence.