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Emirates Forced to Deny Reports Reports of Near-Miss Mid-Air Collision Over Africa as it Gets Caught Up in Regional Political Dispute

Emirates Forced to Deny Reports Reports of Near-Miss Mid-Air Collision Over Africa as it Gets Caught Up in Regional Political Dispute

an airplane flying over water

Emirates has been forced to deny reports that one of its Boeing 777-300 aircraft with a capacity of 360 passengers was involved in a potentially catastrophic near-miss accident high above the skies of Africa on Sunday evening.

The alleged incident came to light from an account on the social media site X (formerly Twitter), which is purportedly run by the Civil Aviation and Airports Authority of the small breakaway East African state of Somaliland.

The report claims that Emirates flight EK722, which was flying from Nairobi, Kenya, to Dubai, nearly collided with an Ethiopian Airlines-operated Boeing 737 MAX 8 flying between Addis Ababa and Bengaluru as flight number ET690.

According to Somaliland’s CAAA, air traffic controllers in Mogadishu had accidentally put the two aircraft on a collision course at the exact same altitude.

A mid-air collision was only avoided, the CAAA claimed, because its skilled air traffic controllers managed to get the pilot of the Ethiopian Airlines 737 to quickly climb to 39,000 feet just moments before the paths of the two aircraft would have crossed.

Dubai-based Emirates has robustly denied the account, saying in a statement: “Emirates can confirm that there was no instance of an aircraft proximity event compromising the safety of the aircraft over the airspace and during the date and time in question.”

“All Emirates aircraft are equipped with capabilities to maintain safe separation and distance during operations.”

Somaliland’s CAAA used the alleged incident to slam the skill of air traffic controllers in Mogadishu.

Somaliland declared itself an independent state in 1991, separating itself from Somalia, although Mogadishu disputes its sovereignty. No other country formally recognizes Somaliland as independent, and only Taiwan has previously referred to Somaliland as a country.

Earlier this year, Addis Ababa reportedly promised Somaliland a stake in flag carrier Ethiopian Airlines as part of a deal to secure access to the Red Sea port of Berbera in the Gulf of Aden.

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