American Air Ends Qatar, Etihad Codeshare Over UAE Subsidies as Tensions Heighten

  • American Air Ends Qatar, Etihad Codeshare Over UAE Subsidies as Tensions Heighten

American Air Ends Qatar, Etihad Codeshare Over UAE Subsidies as Tensions Heighten

American spokesman Joshua Freed said Thursday that American's move to end the codeshare agreements won't impact its interline and frequent flyer program partnerships with Etihad and Qatar.

"Given the extremely strong public stance that American has taken on the ME3 issue, we have reached the conclusion that the codesharing relationships between American and these carriers no longer make sense for us", American said in a prepared statement.

"We are committed to the United States market and American consumers, and are taking all possible measures to ensure that the flying public is not harmed by this decision". The Open Skies agreements provided a means to achieve similar results in the global market by encouraging other governments to do the same.

Al Baker said he won't be discouraged from investing in American despite the Fort Worth, Texas-based carrier's decision to end marketing agreements with Qatar Airways and Etihad as of March 24.

Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker bragged about how young his flight attendants were and disparaged American airlines for hiring "grandmothers" during a speech in Dublin, Ireland, on July 5 (video below).

Then al-Baker found himself in the hot seat this week after disparaging United States flight attendants as "grandmothers" and boasting that his own cabin crew personnel had an average age of 26.

American's decision came after Qatar Airways said in June that it wanted to buy as much as a 10 percent stake in American Airlines, which caught the U.S. carrier by surprise.

Qatar Airways' newest ambassador Fahad Al Qubaisi said: "I'm thrilled to be here for this important event, where we have gathered to show our unity as a nation in the midst of this blockade".

American announced earlier this week it will cancel code-share agreements with both Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways, a deal which sees the carrier's market agreed flights between each other allowing then to extend route coverage.

The proposed investment would not change American Airline's "board, governance, management or strategic direction", it said.

Delta's senior vice president of in-flight service, Allison Ausband, called Al Baker's remarks "rude" and "misogynistic".

Al Baker previous year was asked about complaints by US airline chiefs - Delta's Richard Anderson among them - that carriers from the Persian Gulf region use government subsidies to unfairly fuel growth. The Gulf carriers deny the allegation.