Aug 18 (Reuters) - The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has barred all American airlines from flying over Syria, saying the ongoing armed conflict and volatile security environment poses a "serious potential threat" to civil aircraft.
"Due to the presence of anti-aircraft weapons among the extremist groups and ongoing fighting in various locations throughout Syria, there is a continuing significant potential threat to civil aviation operating in Syrian airspace," the agency said in a statement.
The FAA previously had issued a notice that advised all American carriers to avoid flying over Syria. The new rule requires carriers to contact the FAA before operating in the airspace. (http://1.usa.gov/1le4WiH) (Reporting by Ramkumar Iyer in Bangalore; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)