EASA extends ban flights for Pakistan Airlines.

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The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has extended the ban on flights on European territory for Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) for three more months, despite expectations by Pakistani officials that the ban would be lifted.

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The EASA reported Saturday that the ban would only be lifted after a safety audit by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), Dawn said. The agency had suspended authorization for PIA to operate flights in EU member states for six months in July because of safety concerns.

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“We have asked EASA that they can conduct a safety audit of PIA, independent of the CAA, and in the meantime grant us provisional permission,” said a senior airline official. In response, the agency said it could not issue such a permit.

“As for the lack of confidence in the certification and oversight activities carried out by the Pakistani CAA, which was the second aspect that led to the suspension of the Third Country Operator Authorization, the investigation conducted by the European Commission and ICAO has not yet been concluded,” EASA said in a letter.

“Consequently, as all the preconditions for lifting the suspension are not met and as an audit will be necessary, the agency decided not to revoke its Third Country Operator Authorization, but to extend the suspension period for an additional three months,” he added.

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