EU regulator says risk of civil planes being accidentally targeted in Ukraine war

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BRUSSELS (Reuters) -The European Union's Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) regulator warned on Thursday of increased risks to airlines due to the war in Ukraine, such as civil planes being accidentally targeted as well as an increased risk of cyber attacks.

"As shown by previous wars, misidentification is easy in confused arenas of warfare. The development of this risk is common to all combatants. If we add in the likelihood of jamming of electronic aids that may be involved with navigation and or...identification tools, then it is easy to see the potential for innocent aircraft being subject to missiles or radar laid weapons," it said in a document published online.

The EASA's statement did not specify that its warning related to Ukraine's airspace, but was more generically related to risks to planes from the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

The regulator added there were also risks related to an increase in the number of military operations using civilian airports, and the fact that "military drones and aircraft operating in the conflict zone may inadvertently infringe adjacent civil airspace."

(Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Toby Chopra)