6 Jun 2022 10:26

Case of Aeroflot plane detained in Sri Lanka being addressed at judicial, diplomatic levels

NEW DELHI. June 6 (Interfax) - A court in Sri Lanka is hearing the case of a detained Aeroflot plane, and respective diplomatic contacts are continuing, the Sri Lankan Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

"The matter is still pending final determination of the court. This matter is also under consultation through normal diplomatic channels," the ministry said.

On June 2, 2022, the Commercial High Court of the Western Province issued an enjoining order on the Aeroflot flight restraining it from taking off from Bandaranaike International Airport. The case relates to a commercial dispute between the Plaintiff, Celestial Aviation Trading 10 Limited, an Irish company, against the first defendant the Public Joint Stock Company "Aeroflot" and the second defendant, the head of the Sri Lankan Air Navigation/Airport and Aviation Services of Sri Lanka, the ministry said.

Aeroflot said the day before it was suspending commercial flights to Colombo "due to the uncertainty about unimpeded airline flights to Sri Lanka." Ticket sales for flights to Colombo were also suspended.

As reported earlier, an Aeroflot Airbus A330 arrived in Colombo in the morning of June 2 to perform a return flight to Moscow. The flight was delayed until Friday morning.

The plane failed to depart for Russia on Friday, as well. The local media said that the Commercial High Court in Colombo prohibited the Aeroflot Airbus A330 from leaving Sri Lanka at least until June 16 due to the complaint filed by the Irish company Celestial Aviation Trading Limited, an affiliate of the lessor GECAS.

The hearing on lifting the plane's detention is scheduled for June 8. Meanwhile, passengers have been accommodated in a hotel.