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Colombia airline shuns Venezuela after warplane approaches passenger jet.

BOGOTA/CARACAS, Muharram 21, 1438, Oct 22, 2016, SPA -- Colombia's Avianca airline is avoiding Venezuelan airspace after a flight from Spain was approached by at least one warplane on Friday, creating a diplomatic incident, according to flight data, an airline source and authorities, Reuters reported. Colombia's Defense Ministry said the plane flying from Madrid to Bogota was briefly approached by a Venezuelan military plane, resulting in diplomatic conversations and Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordering an investigation. There was as yet no official word from Avianca, but a source at the carrier told Reuters it had suspended flights to and over Venezuela after two warplanes approached its plane on Friday evening, forcing it out of Venezuelan airspace. Data from online tracker FlightRadar24 confirmed Avianca's flights were avoiding Venezuela on Saturday. It also showed Avianca's Boeing Dreamliner took a sharp turn when flying over west Venezuela around 2000 local time (2000 EST/0000 GMT), in line with a statement by Colombian authorities. Both nations' defense and foreign ministers have discussed the plane incident, Colombia said. It said Maduro "personally ordered the investigation into the case." -- SPA 23:13 LOCAL TIME 20:13 GMT

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Publication:Saudi Press Agency (SPA)
Geographic Code:3COLO
Date:Oct 22, 2016
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