A database of the Russian airlines that have flown to the occupied Crimea in August, 2017


Olha KORBUT
The Maidan of Foreign Affairs Crimea Department, Black Sea Institute of Strategic Studies

Translated by Tetyana PUCHKOVA

The Black Sea Institute of Strategic Studies, BSNews and Maidan of Foreign Affairs monitoring group presents the list of the Russian airlines illegal flights to the occupied Crimea in August 2017. 

VQ-BPW Aeroflot — Airbus A320-214. Photo by Dmirty Petrov, planespotters.net

Air traffic with the occupied Crimea remains one of two possible ways of getting to the peninsula. Since the beginning of the annexation, over 40 Russian, one Vietnamese and one Cambodian airline have been operating passenger flights to the Simferopol airport, the only functioning airport in the peninsula.

The full list of airlines that have been illegally flying to the occupied Crimea in the last 3.5 years can be seen here.

The 2017 holiday season showed a decrease in the tourist flow to the Russia-occupied Crimea, in particular, by air. In August of this year, 5368 flights were flown to and from the airport of Simferopol, compared to 6026 over the same period last year. The largest number of August flights to and from the occupied Crimea was in 2015, amounting to 6454, compared to 3700 in the August of 2014, first year of annexation.

The comparative chart below shows significant changes in the frequency of air travel during the occupation. Along with the 2015 peak, the two subsequent years show a clear downward trend in the number of daily flights both ways. Moscow and St. Petersburg remain the most popular destinations, while flights from other Russian cities to the occupied Crimea rarely exceed once a day.

Dynamics of Flights to the Occupied Crimea in August 2014-2017

The Black Sea Institute of Strategic Studies, BSNews and Maidan of Foreign Affairs monitoring group also regularly monitors the subsequent movement of aircrafts that illegally fly to the occupied Crimea and can confirm that a number of them also provide passenger traffic to the European countries that have condemned the Russian annexation of Crimea. The database of those aircrafts is being continuously updated and expanded. Previous monitoring results can be found in the Black Sea Institute of Strategic Studies, BSNews and the Maidan of Foreign Affairs monthly air traffic reviews.

The table below details the European flights by the Russian airlines that regularly fly to the Simferopol airport:

Aircraft
registration

Aircraft
type

Airline

Flights to/from EU

VP-BLP

Airbus A320-214

Aeroflot

SU2303 Frankfurt (Germany)-Moscow
7:14PM-11:06PM 28.08.2017
SU2468 Moscow-Budapest (Hungary)
6:11PM-7:27PM 19.08.2017
SU2211 Stockholm (Sweden)-Moscow
12:59PM-3:45PM 19.08.2017
SU2349 Hamburg (Germany)-Moscow
7:08PM-10:22PM 09.08.2017
SU2015 Prague (Czech Republic)-Moscow
5:58PM-9:08PM 03.08.2017

VP-BFH

Airbus A320-214

Aeroflot

SU2014 Moscow-Prague(Czech Republic)
4:12PM-5:25PM 30.08.2017
SU2317 Berlin(Germany)-Moscow
11:00PM-2:15PM 29.08.2017
SU2211 Stockholm(Sweden)-Moscow
12:57PM-3:40PM 28.08.2017
SU2658 Moscow-Copenhagen(Denmark)
11:02AM-12:09PM 24.08.2017
SU2536 Moscow-Dusseldorf (Germany)
7:40AM-10:01AM 20.08.2017
SU2003 Warsaw(Poland)-Moscow
8:12PM-10:54PM 19.08.2017
SU2348 Moscow-Hamburg (Germany)
3:55PM-5:32PM 14.08.2017

VQ-BPW

Airbus A320-214

Aeroflot

SU2030 Moscow-Budapest(Hungary)
10:28AM-11:50AM 27.08.2017
SU2536 Moscow-Dusseldorf (Germany)
9:39AM-11:28AM 24.08.2017
SU2496 Moscow-Copenhagen(Denmark)
8:16PM-9:29PM 21.08.2017
SU2015 Prague (Czech Republic)-Moscow
6:02PM-9:21PM 20.08.2017
SU2185 Vienna(Austria)-Moscow
12:12PM-3:29PM 19.08.2017
SU2346 Moscow-Hamburg(Germany)
11:03AM-12:38PM 16.08.2017
SU2316 Moscow-Berlin(Germany)
7:46PM-9:09PM 15.08.2017
SU2322 Moscow-Munich(Germany)
9:46AM-11:24AM 12.08.2017

VP-BCB

Airbus A320-214

Aeroflot

SU2002 Moscow-Warsaw(Poland)
6:20PM-7:20PM 27.08.2017
SU2210 Moscow-Stockholm(Sweden)
10:40AM-11:41AM 27.08.2017
SU2496 Moscow-Copenhagen(Denmark)
8:04PM-9:15PM 25.08.2017
SU2010 Moscow-Prague(Czech Republic)
7:49AM-9:01AM 24.08.2017
SU2030 Moscow-Budapest(Hungary)
10:29AM-11:47AM 22.08.2017
SU2316 Moscow-Berlin(Germany)
7:54PM-9:10PM 20.08.2017
SU2155 Dusseldorf(Germany)-Moscow
6:37PM-10:01PM 05.08.2017

VP-BJY

Airbus A320-214

Aeroflot

SU2174 Moscow-Oslo(Norway)
11:09PM-12:27PM 25.08.2017
SU2002 Moscow-Warsaw(Poland)
6:16PM-7:01PM 21.08.2017
SU2175 Oslo(Norway)-Moscow
1:19PM-4:34PM 21.08.2017
SU2122 Moscow-Heraklion(Greece)
2:44PM-6:37PM 16.08.2017
SU2496 Moscow-Copenhagen(Denmark)
7:58PM-9:12PM 15.08.2017
SU2116 Moscow-Kaunas(Lithuania)
8:55AM-10:17AM 15.08.2017
SU2312 Moscow-Berlin(Germany)
9:47AM-11:08AM 11.08.2017

VP-BSW

Airbus A321-231

Ural Airlines

U6742 Rimini(Italy)-Moscow
11:25AM-3:16PM 27.08.2017
U6845 Moscow-Barcelona(Spain)
8:18AM-11:26AM 14.08.2017
U6848 Palma de Mallorca(Spain)-Moscow
4:56PM-10:22PM 13.08.2017
U67031 Moscow-Larnaca(Cyprus)
10:32AM-1:50PM 3.08.2017


*  *  *

Traditionally, August is the peak month of passenger air travel to/from the resort regions. According to the official site of the Simferopol airport, in 2016, the airport serviced 5.2 million passengers. The Crimea occupation authorities have repeatedly stated their intention to increase the airport's capacity to service 7-10 million people per year, predicting the annual increase of the number of tourists flying to the peninsula.

According to the official website, as of August 17, 2017, the number of people who had used the Simferopol airport was over three million. Meanwhile, on May 19, 2017, the airport marked a millionth passenger since the beginning of the year. That is, in the three months of the holiday season, the airlines carried 2 million people to the occupied Crimea. At the end of August, it was announced that by the end of 2017, the airport would service five million passengers. However, despite the optimistic statements by the occupation authorities, this year's air passenger flow has not only not increased, but actually, based on the dynamics of the last eight months, is expected to decrease by about 10-15%.

The decrease in passenger traffic is due, first of all, to the overpriced airfare and recreation services of the peninsula that do not provide the adequate quality for the money. For instance, a longer flight from Moscow or St. Petersburg to most Turkish resorts cost the same or less than the air trip to Simferopol. The airfare subsidies offered by several of Russian airlines are very limited and available only for certain categories of passengers.

Nevertheless, the construction of a new terminal that would allow the capacity increase to the planned 7 million passengers is underway.


New terminal construction at the Simferopol Airport. Photo by the Simferopol Airport press-service.

*  *  *

According to the Russian Internet publication RIA Novosti (Crimea), in February 2017, a new Russian airline Azimut based in Rostov-on-Don had been created that according to the director general of the Simferopol airport Yevgenii Plaksin, would operate flights to Simferopol. The airline will use Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircrafts. The official website of the airline already offers tickets from Rostov to a number of Russian cities, even though Simferopol isn’t among them yet.

In August 2017, the following 19 Russian airlines flew to the airport of the occupied Crimea:

Aeroflot

ІАТА SU
ІКАО AFL
Callsign: AEROFLOT
Hub: Sheremetyevo Airport (Moscow)
Headquarters: Moscow, Russia
Subsidiaries: Donavia, Оrenburg Airlines, Dobrolyot, Аvrora, Pobeda; Rossiya [2]
Member of the SkyTeam

Destinations: US, EU, Canada, Mexico, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Asia, Baltics, UK, Middle East, the CIS countries

Rossiya

ІАТА FV
ІКАО SDM
Callsign: Rossiya
Main hub: Pulkovo Airport (St.Petersburg)
Other hubs: Vnukovo (Moscow), Simferopol, Adler (Sochi)
Headquarters: St.Petersburg, Russia
A subsidiary of Aeroflot

Destinations: Netherlands, Spain, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Greece, Cyprus, UK, Italy, France, Czech Republic, Тurkey, Bulgaria, Egypt, Іzrael, the CIS countries

Ural Airlines

ІАТА U6
ІКАО SVR
Callsign: Sverdlovsk Air
Main hub: Koltsovo Airport (Yekaterinburg)
Other hubs: Domodedovo Airport (Moscow), Tolmachevo Airport (Novosibirsk)
Headquarters: Yekaterinburg

Destinations: Кazakhstan, Turkey, Azerbaijan, Spain, Kyrgyzstan, Bulgaria, UAE, Тajikistan, Armenia, Greece, Italy, Czech Republic, China, Finland, Іsrael, Georgia

Globus

ІАТА GH
ІКАО GLP
Callsign: Globus
Main hub: Domodedovo Airport (Moscow)
Other hubs: Tolmachevo Airport (Novosibirsk)
Headquarters:Ob
Subsidiary of the S7 Airlines holding

Destinations: domestic

VIM-Avia

ІАТА NN
ІКАО MOV
Callsign: Mov Air
Main hub: Domodedovo Airport (Moscow)
Headquarters: Moscow

Destinations: Regular charter flights to Spain, Italy, Greece, Armenia, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, France, Finland, Austria, Bulgaria, India, UAE and Sri Lanka

Red Wings

ІАТА WZ
ІКАО RWZ
Callsign: AIR RED
Hubs: Vnukovo Airport (Moscow), Domodedovo Airport (Moscow), Simferopol Airport
Headquarters: Moscow

Destinations: Austria, Montenegro, Finland, Balkan, Egypt and Mediterranean countries

NordAvia

IATA 5N
IKAO AUL
Callsign: ARKHANGELSK AIR
Main hub: Talagi Airport (Аrkhangelsk)
Other hubs: Syktyvkar, Murmansk, Domodedovo
Headquarters: Аrkhangelsk

Destinations: domestic

Nordwind Airlines

ІАТА N4
ІКАО NWS
Callsign: NORDLAND
Main hub: Sheremetyevo Airport (Moscow)
Headquarters: Moscow
A subsidiary of the Pegas Touristic Holding

Destinations: Charter flights to Jordan, Thailand, Cuba, Vietnam, Mexico, Tunisia, Dominical Republic, Israel

Ikar(Pegas)

ІАТА IK
ІКАО KAR
Callsign: KRASJET
Main hub: Yemelyanovo Airport (Krasnoyarsk)
Headquarters: Krasnoyarsk

Destinations: Charter flights to Turkey, Spain, Тhailand, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Vietnam

Saratov Airlines

IATA 6W
IKAO SOV
Callsign: SARATOV AIR
Main hub: Saratov
Headquarters: Saratov

Destinations: domestic

Yamal

IATA YC
IKAO LLM
Callsign: YAMAL
Hubs: Salekhard, Roshino (Tyumen), Domededovo (Moscow)
Headquarters: Salekhard

Destinations: Turkey, Armenia, Greece, Montenegro, Azerbaijan, Tajikistan, Sweden

Yakutia

ATA R3
IKAO SYL
Callsign: AIR YAKUTIA
Main hub: Yakutsk
Other hubs: Vnukovo (Moscow), Irkutsk, Krasnodar, Khabarovsk
Headquarters: Yakutsk

Destinations: domestic, China, South Korea and Czech Republic

Ifly

IATA I4 (H5)
IKAO RSY
Callsign: RUSSIAN SKY
Main hub: Vnukovo (Moscow)
Headquarters: Moscow

Destinations: domestic,Turkey, Italy, Belgium, Spain, China

Izhavia

IATA I8
IKAO IZA
Callsign: IZHAVIA
Main hub: Іzhevsk
Headquarters: Іzhevsk

Destinations: domestic

Severstal

IATA D2
IKAO SSF
Callsign: SEVERSTAL
Main hub: Cherepovets
Headquarters: Cherepovets

Destinations: domestic, Bulgaria and Georgia

UVT

ІАТА UW
ІКАО UVT
Callsign: UVT
Hubs: Kazan, Bugulma
Headquarters: Bugulma

Destinations: domestic,

Alrosa

ІАТА 6R (ЯМ)
ІКАО DRU
Callsign: Mirny
Hubs: Mirny (Yakutiya), Domodedovo (Moscow)
Headquarters: Мирний (Yakutiya)

Destinations: Charter flights to the countries of the CIS, Asia and EU

Gazprom Avia

IATA 4G
IKAO GZP
Callsign: GAZPROM
Main hub: Ostafyevo (Moscow)
Other hubs: Vnukovo (Moscow)
Headquarters: Moscow

Destinations: domestic, Uzbekistan

Kostroma

IATA KB
IKAO KMW
Callsign: KOSTROMA
Main hub: Кostroma
Headquarters: Кostroma

Destinations: domestic

 


A Ural Airlines aircraft in the Simferopol Airport. Photo yuhanson.livejournal.com

 

Note:

In December 2014 the administration of the US President Barack Obama has adopted a number of decisions regarding the sanctions for any action in the occupied Crimea.

In April of the same year, in accordance with the ICAO Convention on International Civil Aviation, the Eurocontrol (the European Organization for the Safety of Air Navigation), banned the European airlines from flying to the Russia-occupied Crimea and Sevastopol. [1].

Ukraine officially accused [2] Russia of violation of the international multilateral and bilateral agreements and the provisions of the European Air Navigation Plan, as well as in ignoring the established borders of the Flight Information Regions (FIR) [3].

The Air Navigation Services in the sky over the Crimean Peninsula belong to the jurisdiction to Ukraine that due to the Russian annexation of the Crimean AR had to move the dispatch center from Simferopol to Kyiv and Odessa.

However, due to the inability of the State Avia Service to guarantee security of the Ukraine flights over the occupied territories, in March 2014, it was decided to close the airports in Simferopol and Belbek and the lower airspace and to restrict traffic in Simferopol flight information region.

At the same time, Ukraine continues to service the Black Sea FIR within its competence.

In April 2014, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) called Russia's actions to seize control of the airspace above Crimea and the Black Sea waters that belong to the Ukrainian FIR, illegal [4].

[1] The ban of the flights to the occupied Crimea for European airlines: http://en.interfax.com.ua/news/general/198796.html

[2] Announcement of the SE "UkrAeroRukh" of the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine: http://uksatse.ua/index.php?act=Part&CODE=247&id=264

[3] The FIR (Flight Information Region) is a specified region of airspace in which a flight information service and an alerting service are provided

[4] The publication in the online edition of the Tyzhden magazine from 16.04.2014 http://tyzhden.ua/News/107719

For two and a half years, the BSNews and Maidan of Foreign Affairs monitoring group conducts daily monitoring of the illegal flights to the occupied Crimea followed by the media publications of the results of the investigation on the airlines-offenders.

* * *

For the last two and a half years, the Black Sea Institute of Strategic Studies, BSNews and Maidan of Foreign Affairs monitoring group has been conducting daily monitoring of the illegal flights to the occupied Crimea with further publications in the media on the airlines offenders.

* * *

The monitoring of the violations of the international sanctions against Russia and the legal regime of the temporarily occupied territory of Crimea is supported by the European Program Initiative of the Renaissance International Foundation. The position of Renaissance International Foundation may not reflect the opinion of the authors.



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