Philippine flights unaffected by N. Korea satellite launch: CAAP


Posted at May 31 2023 11:04 AM | Updated as of May 31 2023 05:51 PM

MANILA — Domestic flights will not be heavily affected by the launch of North Korea's satellite, the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) said on Wednesday. 

Pyongyang's satellite launch will only affect 2 routes to Guam and rerouting schemes were already implemented, CAAP's deputy director-general for operations Capt. Edgardo Diaz said. 

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) on Monday issued a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) directing all commercial pilots to avoid the airspace surrounding North Korea, South Korea, and eastern Japan from 8:00 a.m. on Wednesday, May 31, until 7:59 a.m. on June 11.

"Hindi tayo gaano apektado sapagkat ang area na kanilang inidentify is almost at the west portion ng Pilipinas, malapit na sa boundary ng another airspace," Diaz said in a public briefing. 

"All the domestic flights in the Philippines will not be affected and most of the flights going to and out of the Philippines, hindi rin naman gaano sapagkat magkakaroon ng rerouting ang mga airlines," he added. 

(We will not be that affected because the area they identified is almost at the west portion of the Philippines, near the boundary of another airspace. All the domestic flights will not be affected and most of the flights going to and out of the Philippines won't be that affected because airlines will implement rerouting.)

The Philippine Airlines said its flights were "not affected by the said airspace restrictions."

"We continue to closely monitor the situation. In the event flight rerouting will be deemed necessary, we will carry out these flight routing adjustment," the flag carrier said in a statement. 

North Korea attempted to launch a spy satellite Wednesday but it crashed into the sea after a rocket failure, with the South Korean military retrieving part of the likely wreckage in a potential intelligence bonanza.

North Korea does not have a functioning satellite in space and leader Kim Jong Un has made developing a military spy satellite a top priority for his regime, despite UN resolutions banning its use of such technology.

Pyongyang had said in the build-up to the launch attempt that the satellite would be vital to monitoring the military movements of the United States and its allies.

But the rocket lost thrust and plunged into the sea with its satellite payload, the official Korean Central News Agency reported.


— With a report from Agence France-Presse

Video from PTV