THE Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) on Wednesday said that the Notice to Airmen (Notam), which prohibits commercial airlines from flying in and out of Zamboanga City, has been extended up to Thursday.
According to its Operations Center, Director General William Hotchkiss 3rd approved the extension for security reasons since the ongoing conflict between government security forces and rogue Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) members has yet to be resolved.
CAAP suspended all flights to and from Zamboanga on September 9 after MNLF forces raided at least five coastal barangays in Zamboanga City and took residents hostage to make them “human shields.”
Although the airport is more than three kilometers away from the conflict site, CAAP officials decided to suspend airport operations after stray bullets reportedly reached the runway.
At least 10 domestic flights continue to be affected by the suspension order.
CAAP said the Notam will still depend on the prevailing situation in Zamboanga City. PNA