S Korea diverts jets over threats

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I remember one of times I went to S. Korea and the captain said “we just got approved to fly over N. Korea…this will reduce our time”.  I was like “what…I don’t mind the extra 45mins in the air, I rather do that than get shot down lol….”

Two airlines in South Korea are to re-route flights after North Korea said it could not guarantee their safety.

Pyongyang’s threat follows its warnings that a US-South Korean military exercise, due to take place next week, could trigger a military clash.

North Korea has long described such exercises as provocative but tensions between the two Koreas are now high.

About 30 international flights a day usually pass through North Korean airspace to and from the South.

South Korea has called on the communist state to immediately withdraw its threat.

“Threatening civilian airliners’ normal operations under international aviation regulations is not only against the international rules but is an act against humanity,” Unification Ministry spokesman Kim Ho-nyeon said.

The BBC’s John Sudworth in Seoul says passenger planes normally leave Seoul for the eastern United States by swinging north over the Sea of Japan to follow the Korean coastline towards Russia and North Alaska.

The two major airlines, Korean Air and Asiana Airlines, have re-routed some 200 flights over the next two weeks, at the cost of four million won ($2,500; £1,800) per flight.

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