FAA officials have upgraded Venezuela
to category 1 under its International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA)
program, diverting an embargo that would have banned most US
airline service to the South American country.
agency’s ruling today comes after weeks of negotiations between the two
early this year warned that it would limit US
carriers’ access to Venezuela
if a more than decade’s old category 2 rating was not
upgraded. Under the plan, all of Continental Airlines and Delta Air Lines
flights to Caracas
would be banned, while almost 70% of American Airlines’ service would be
latest deadline for imposing the threat was to expire on April 25.
category 2 rating held by Venezuela
since 1996 has limited the country’s airlines from serving the USA
to costly wet-lease arrangements.
FAA is expected to release a statement on the upgrade later today.