China Grounds Flights ahead of Space Launch

From Financial Times:

The increasingly exasperated flight crew and passengers on Dragonair flight KA904 to Beijing at first had no idea why they were stuck on the tarmac at Hong Kong airport on Thursday evening.

Only after hours of delay did they find out that their trip had been grounded by a last-minute order from China’s secretive air traffic controllers intended to prevent any potential problems from marring the long-planned launch of the nation’s third manned space mission.

[…] “I can’t believe that the Chinese have done this without notice. I have meetings at 8am in Beijing to discuss a big investment in China,” said an executive at a Japanese private equity firm. “This seriously makes me wonder whether we should invest in a country that treats people like this.”

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