Flights to Hatay, a city severely affected by the 6 February earthquakes, have been suspended until 17 May without explanation, causing chaos for residents wishing to return home to vote in the coming elections on 14 May, reports the news site Diken.
Major Turkish airlines, including Pegasus and Turkish Airlines, have marked their flights to Hatay as either “full” or “no flights”, although flights to other earthquake-stricken cities are going on as normal.
Efforts have been made to clarify the situation with the relevant authorities, but a clear reason for the sudden suspension of flights to Hatay has yet to be provided. A representative from the State Airports Administration said to Diken that they had not been informed of any issues, while a Turkish Airlines customer service representative claimed that flights had been booked to capacity before any official announcements were made.
Hatay residents displaced to other cities after the earthquake have started looking for tickets to return home to cast their votes, only to discover that flights have been cancelled until after the election. While departures from Hatay are still operational, the suspension of flights into the city has caused significant inconvenience for residents trying to exercise their democratic right to vote.