AirAsia Berhad is a Malaysian low-cost airline headquartered near Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It is the largest airline in Malaysia by fleet size and destinations. AirAsia Group operates scheduled domestic and international flights to more than 165 destinations spanning 25 countries, its main hub is klia2, the low-cost carrier terminal at Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Sepang, Malaysia. Its affiliate airlines Thai AirAsia, Indonesia AirAsia, Philippines AirAsia, AirAsia India have hubs in Don Mueang International Airport, Soekarno–Hatta International Airport, Ninoy Aquino International Airport, Kempegowda International Airport while its sister airline, AirAsia X, focuses on long-haul routes. AirAsia's registered office is in Petaling Jaya, Selangor while its head office is at Kuala Lumpur International Airport. AirAsia operates with the world's lowest unit cost of US$0.023 per available seat kilometre and a passenger breakeven load factor of 52%. In 2007, The New York Times described the airline as a "pioneer" of low-cost travel in Asia.
AirAsia is the sponsor of Malaysia national football team, Singapore national football team, Jamshedpur FC and Queens Park Rangers. AirAsia is a former sponsor of Manchester United and Asia Red Tour. AirAsia has been named as the world's best low-cost carrier for 10 years in a row in international travel and airline awards, including the latest award for 2018. AirAsia was established in 1993 and began operations on 18 November 1996, it was founded by a government-owned conglomerate, DRB-HICOM. On 2 December 2001, the indebted airline was bought by former Time Warner executive Tony Fernandes' company Tune Air Sdn Bhd for the token sum of one ringgit with US$11 million worth of debts. Fernandes turned the company around, producing a profit in 2002 and launching new routes from its hub in Kuala Lumpur, undercutting former monopoly operator Malaysia Airlines with promotional fares as low as MYR 1. In 2003, AirAsia opened a second hub at Senai International Airport in Johor Bahru near Singapore and launched its first international flight to Bangkok.
AirAsia subsequently started its Thai AirAsia affiliate, began flights to Singapore and Indonesia. Flights to Macau started in June 2004, flights to mainland China and the Philippines in April 2005. Flights to Vietnam and Cambodia followed in 2005 and to Brunei and Myanmar in 2006, the latter by Thai AirAsia. In August 2006, AirAsia took over Malaysia Airlines's Rural Air Service routes in Sabah and Sarawak, operating under the FlyAsianXpress brand; the routes were returned to MASwings a year citing commercial reasons. At the end of 2006, Fernandes unveiled a five-year plan to further enhance AirAsia's presence in Asia. Under the plan, AirAsia proposed enhancing its route network by connecting all of its existing destinations throughout the region and expanding further into Vietnam, Southern China and India. Through its sister companies, Thai AirAsia and Indonesia AirAsia, the plan called for a focus on developing its hub in Bangkok and Jakarta. With increased frequency and the addition of new routes, AirAsia increased passenger volume to 13.9 million in its 2007 fiscal year.
During 2007, passengers from "The Barrier-Free Environment and Accessible Transport Group" protested against the airline over its refusal to fly passengers who were immobile. They claimed. On 27 September 2008, the company announced 106 new routes to be added to its list of 60; the number of old routes discontinued has not been disclosed. In August 2011, AirAsia agreed to form an alliance with Malaysia Airlines by means of a share swap; the alliance was struck down by the Malaysian government, in effect voiding the agreement of both airlines. By early 2013, AirAsia's profits increased by 168% on a year-over-year basis compared to the same period in 2012. For the quarter ending 31 December 2012, the airline's net profit stood at 350.65 million ringgit. Despite a 1% rise in the average fuel price, the airline recorded profits of 1.88 billion ringgit for its full 2012 fiscal year. In February 2013, AirAsia submitted an application to the Indian Foreign Investment Promotion Board, through its investment arm, AirAsia Investment Limited, to seek approval for commencing its operations in India.
AirAsia asked to take a 49% stake in the Indian sister airline, the maximum allowed by the Indian government at that time. AirAsia committed to invest up to US$50 million in the new airline. Operations would begin in Chennai, expanding its network throughout South India, where AirAsia operates flights from Malaysia and Thailand; the head office is the Red Quarters at Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Selangor. The registered office is on level 13 of the Menara Prima Tower B in Petaling Jaya; the airline has moved its head office to a new 613,383 square feet, RM140mil facility constructed at klia2 on 7 November 2016. Until the new head office opened, the airline's head office has remained at LCCT; the new klia2 head office has been scheduled to open in the end of 2015. It is scheduled to hold about 2,000 AirAsia X employees. Aireen Omar, the AirAsia Country CEO of Malaysia, stated that the headquarters needed to be redesigned because in the klia2 plans the location of the control tower had been changed.
Construction on the facility was scheduled to begin in July 2014. Malaysia Airports Holdings is leasing the land. An AirAsia X flight attendant gave the building t
Incheon International Airport
Incheon International Airport is the largest airport in South Korea, the primary airport serving the Seoul Capital Area, one of the largest and busiest airports in the world. Since 2005, it has been rated the best airport worldwide by Airports Council International every year, it is rated as the world's cleanest airport and the world's best international transit airport by Skytrax. The airport has a golf course, private sleeping rooms, an ice skating rink, a casino, indoor gardens, a Museum of Korean Culture. Airport authorities claim that average departure and arrival takes 19 minutes and 12 minutes as compared to worldwide average of 60 minutes and 45 minutes ranking it among the fastest airports in the world for customs processing, its duty-free shopping mall has been rated the world's best for three years in a row in 2013 by Business Traveller. Incheon International Airport claims that it has only a 0.0001% baggage mishandling rate. The airport opened for business on March 29, 2001 to replace the older Gimpo International Airport, which now serves domestic destinations and shuttle flights to several East Asian metropolitan areas including Tokyo, Beijing and Taipei.
Incheon International Airport is located west of Incheon's city center, on an artificially created piece of land between Yeongjong and Yongyu Islands. The two islands were separated by shallow sea; that area between the two islands was reclaimed for the construction project connecting the once separate Yeongjong and Yongyu islands. The reclaimed area as well as the two islands are all part of Jung-gu, an administrative district of Incheon; the airport holds a record of being ranked the Best Airport Worldwide for 11 consecutive years by the Airports Council International's Airport Service Quality Award from 2005 to 2016, has been rated the world's best among airports of its size and region since 2012 due to the institution's decision to discontinue the Best Airport Worldwide category. Incheon International Airport's terminal has 111 boarding gates altogether, with 44 in Terminal 1, 30 in Concourse A, 37 in Terminal 2; the airport was constructed to share the demand for air transport in the 21st century and to serve as a hub airport in Northeast Asia.
After the Seoul Olympics of 1988, international air traffic to Korea increased. In the 1990s, it became apparent that Gimpo International Airport could not cope with the increase in air traffic. To reduce the load on Gimpo International Airport, the government decided to build a new airport; the new airport was planned to be located in Cheongju, 124 km from Seoul, but due to its distance, it was opposed by Seoul and Gyeonggi citizens. Hwaseong was the other choice, but it was rejected due to similar reasons; the area chosen was Incheon. In November 1992, the construction of the Incheon airport began on reclaimed land between Yeongjong Island and Youngyu Island, took eight years to finish, with an additional six months for testing. Completion was scheduled for 1997 but delayed due to the economic crisis; the airport was opened on March 29, 2001. On 15 November 2006, the Airbus A380 landed at the airport as part of the first leg of its certification trip. Tests on the runways and ramps showed that the airport could handle the aircraft.
To further upgrade service and major Korean logistics firm Hanjin Corporation agreed on January 10, 2008 to build Yeongjong Medical Centre, completed in 2012. This hospital serves nearby residents and some of the 30,000 medical tourists who come to Korea annually. Located 48 km west of Seoul, the capital and the largest city of South Korea, Incheon International Airport is the main hub for Korean Air, Asiana Airlines, Jeju Air, Polar Air Cargo; the airport serves as a hub for international civilian air transportation and cargo traffic in East Asia. In 2016, the Incheon International Airport was the fifth busiest airport in the world and third in Asia by cargo traffic, 19th in the world and eighth in Asia by passenger traffic. In 2016, the airport served a total of 57,849,814 passengers; the airport opened for business in early 2001 to replace the older Gimpo International Airport, which now serves domestic destinations plus shuttle flights to alternate airports in China and Taiwan. The airport was planned to be built in three phases, incrementally increasing airport capacity as the demand grew.
This was changed, however, to four phases. In Phase 1, the airport had a capacity of 30 million passengers annually, a cargo capacity of 1.7 million metric tonnes annually. In this phase, a passenger terminal with a floor space of 496,000 square metres, two parallel runways, a control tower, an administrative building, a transportation centre, integrated operations centre, three cargo terminals, international business centre, a government office building were constructed. Phase 2 construction began in 2002, was expected to be completed in December 2008. However, in an attempt to have the airport ready for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, which took place in August 2008, the schedule was modified, Phase 2 construction was completed on 20 June 2008. During this construction phase, a third parallel 4,000-metre-long runway and a 13-hectare cargo terminal area were added. A 16.5-hectare concourse connected to the main passenger building via two par
Thailand the Kingdom of Thailand and known as Siam, is a country at the centre of the Southeast Asian Indochinese peninsula composed of 76 provinces. At 513,120 km2 and over 68 million people, Thailand is the world's 50th largest country by total area and the 21st-most-populous country; the capital and largest city is a special administrative area. Thailand is bordered to the north by Myanmar and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, to the west by the Andaman Sea and the southern extremity of Myanmar, its maritime boundaries include Vietnam in the Gulf of Thailand to the southeast, Indonesia and India on the Andaman Sea to the southwest. Although nominally a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, the most recent coup in 2014 established a de facto military dictatorship. Tai peoples migrated from southwestern China to mainland Southeast Asia from the 11th century. Various Indianised kingdoms such as the Mon, the Khmer Empire and Malay states ruled the region, competing with Thai states such as Ngoenyang, the Sukhothai Kingdom, Lan Na and the Ayutthaya Kingdom, which rivaled each other.
European contact began in 1511 with a Portuguese diplomatic mission to Ayutthaya, one of the great powers in the region. Ayutthaya reached its peak during cosmopolitan Narai's reign declining thereafter until being destroyed in 1767 in a war with Burma. Taksin reunified the fragmented territory and established the short-lived Thonburi Kingdom, he was succeeded in 1782 by Buddha Yodfa Chulaloke, the first monarch of the Chakri dynasty and founder of the Rattanakosin Kingdom, which lasted into the early 20th century. Through the 18th and 19th centuries, Siam faced pressure from France and the United Kingdom, including forced concessions of territory, but it remained the only Southeast Asian country to avoid direct Western rule. Following a bloodless revolution in 1932, Siam became a constitutional monarchy and changed its official name to "Thailand". While it joined the Allies in World War I, Thailand was an Axis satellite in World War II. In the late 1950s, a military coup revived the monarchy's influential role in politics.
Thailand became a major ally of the United States and played a key anti-communist role in the region. Apart from a brief period of parliamentary democracy in the mid-1970s, Thailand has periodically alternated between democracy and military rule. In the 21st century, Thailand endured a political crisis that culminated in two coups and the establishment of its current and 20th constitution by the military junta. Thailand is a unitary parliamentary constitutional monarchy under a military junta. Thailand is a founding member of Association of Southeast Asian Nations and remains a major ally of the US. Despite its comparatively sporadic changes in leadership, it is considered a regional power in Southeast Asia and a middle power in global affairs. With a high level of human development, the second largest economy in Southeast Asia, the 20th largest by PPP, Thailand is classified as a newly industrialized economy. Thailand the Kingdom of Thailand known as Siam, is a country at the centre of the Indochinese peninsula in Southeast Asia.
The country has always been called Mueang Thai by its citizens. By outsiders prior to 1949, it was known by the exonym Siam; the word Siam may have originated from Pali or Sanskrit श्याम or Mon ရာမည. The names Shan and A-hom seem to be variants of the same word; the word Śyâma is not its origin, but a learned and artificial distortion. Another theory is the name derives from Chinese: "Ayutthaya emerged as a dominant centre in the late fourteenth century; the Chinese called this region Xian, which the Portuguese converted into Siam." A further possibility is that Mon-speaking peoples migrating south called themselves'syem' as do the autochthonous Mon-Khmer-speaking inhabitants of the Malay Peninsula. The signature of King Mongkut reads SPPM Mongkut Rex Siamensium, giving the name "Siam" official status until 24 June 1939 when it was changed to Thailand. Thailand was renamed to Siam from 1946 to 1948. According to George Cœdès, the word Thai means "free man" in the Thai language, "differentiating the Thai from the natives encompassed in Thai society as serfs".
A famous Thai scholar argued that Thai means "people" or "human being", since his investigation shows that in some rural areas the word "Thai" was used instead of the usual Thai word "khon" for people. According to Michel Ferlus, the ethnonyms Thai/Tai would have evolved from the etymon *kri:'human being' through the following chain: *kəri: > *kəli: > *kədi:/*kədaj > *di:/*daj > *dajA > tʰajA2 or > tajA2. Michel Ferlus' work is based on some simple rules of phonetic change observable in the Sinosphere and studied for t
International Civil Aviation Organization
The International Civil Aviation Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations. It codifies the principles and techniques of international air navigation and fosters the planning and development of international air transport to ensure safe and orderly growth, its headquarters is located in the Quartier International of Montreal, Canada. The ICAO Council adopts standards and recommended practices concerning air navigation, its infrastructure, flight inspection, prevention of unlawful interference, facilitation of border-crossing procedures for international civil aviation. ICAO defines the protocols for air accident investigation followed by transport safety authorities in countries signatory to the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation; the Air Navigation Commission is the technical body within ICAO. The Commission is composed of 19 Commissioners, nominated by the ICAO's contracting states, appointed by the ICAO Council. Commissioners serve as independent experts, who although nominated by their states, do not serve as state or political representatives.
The development of international Standards And Recommended Practices is done under the direction of the ANC through the formal process of ICAO Panels. Once approved by the Commission, standards are sent to the Council, the political body of ICAO, for consultation and coordination with the Member States before final adoption. ICAO is distinct from other international air transport organizations, like the International Air Transport Association, a trade association representing airlines; the forerunner to ICAO was the International Commission for Air Navigation. It held its first convention in 1903 in Berlin, but no agreements were reached among the eight countries that attended. At the second convention in 1906 held in Berlin, 27 countries attended; the third convention, held in London in 1912 allocated the first radio callsigns for use by aircraft. ICAN continued to operate until 1945. Fifty-two countries signed the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation known as the Chicago Convention, in Chicago, Illinois, on 7 December 1944.
Under its terms, a Provisional International Civil Aviation Organization was to be established, to be replaced in turn by a permanent organization when 26 countries ratified the convention. Accordingly, PICAO began operating on 6 June 1945, replacing ICAN; the 26th country ratified the Convention on 5 March 1947 and PICAO was disestablished on 4 April 1947 and replaced by ICAO, which began operations the same day. In October 1947, ICAO became an agency of the United Nations linked to the United Nations Economic and Social Council. In April 2013 Qatar offered to serve as the new permanent seat of the Organization. Qatar promised to construct a massive new headquarters for ICAO and cover all moving expenses, stating that Montreal "was too far from Europe and Asia", "had cold winters," was hard to attend due to the refusal of the Canadian government to provide visas in a timely manner, that the taxes imposed on ICAO by Canada were too high. According to The Globe and Mail, Qatar's move was at least motivated by the pro-Israel foreign policy of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
One month Qatar withdrew its bid after a separate proposal to the ICAO's governing council to move the ICAO triennial conference to Doha was defeated by a vote of 22–14. The 9th edition of the Convention on International Civil Aviation includes modifications from 1948 up to year 2006. ICAO refers to its current edition of the Convention as the Statute, designates it as ICAO Document 7300/9; the Convention has 19 Annexes that are listed by title in the article Convention on International Civil Aviation. As of January 2019, there are 192 ICAO members, consisting of 191 of the 193 UN members, plus the Cook Islands. Liechtenstein has delegated Switzerland to enter into the treaty on its behalf and the treaty applies in the territory of Liechtenstein; the Republic of China was a founding member of ICAO but was replaced by People's Republic of China as the legal representative of China in 1971 and as such, did not take part in the organization. In 2013, the Republic of China was for the first time invited to attend 38th session of ICAO Assembly as a guest under the name of Chinese Taipei.
The Council of ICAO is elected by the Assembly every 3 years and consists of 36 members elected in 3 groups. The present Council was elected on 4 October 2016 at the 39th Assembly of ICAO at Montreal; the structure of the present Council is as follows: ICAO standardizes certain functions for use in the airline industry, such as the Aeronautical Message Handling System. This makes it a standards organization; each country should have an accessible Aeronautical Information Publication, based on standards defined by ICAO, containing information essential to air navigation. Countries are required to update their AIP manuals every 28 days and so provide definitive regulations and information for each country about airspace and airports. ICAO's standards dictate that temporary hazards to aircraft are published using NOTAMs. ICAO defines an International Standard Atmosphere, a model of the standard variation of pressure, temperature and viscosity with altitude in the Earth's atmosphere; this is useful in designing aircraft.
Kuala Lumpur International Airport
Kuala Lumpur International Airport is Malaysia's main international airport and one of the major airports in Southeast Asia and worldwide. It is located in Sepang District of Selangor 45 kilometres south of Kuala Lumpur city centre and serves the Greater Klang Valley conurbation. KLIA is the busiest airport in Malaysia. In 2017, it handled 710,186 tonnes of cargo, it is the world's 23rd-busiest airport by total passenger traffic. The airport is operated by Malaysia Airports Sepang Sdn Bhd and is the major hub of Malaysia Airlines, MASkargo, AirAsia, AirAsia X, Malindo Air, flyGlobal, UPS Airlines and AsiaCargo Express; the ground breaking ceremony for Kuala Lumpur International Airport took place on 1 June 1993 when the government under Mahathir Mohamad decided that the existing Kuala Lumpur airport known as Subang International Airport could not handle future demand. The construction of the airport was done by a few state owned construction companies as well as Ekovest Berhad – helmed by Tan Sri Datuk Lim Kang Hoo.
It was created as part of a grand development plan for Malaysia. The chief architect who designed the new airport terminal was the Japanese architect Kisho Kurokawa. Upon KLIA's completion, Subang Airport's Terminal 1 building was demolished. Malaysia Airports agreed to redevelop the remaining Terminal 3 to create a specialist airport for turboprop and charter planes surrounded by a residential area and a business park; the IATA airport code KUL was transferred from Subang Airport, which handles only turboprop aircraft, general aviation and military aircraft. Subang Airport's IATA code has since been changed to SZB; the airport's site spans 100 square kilometres 2, of former agricultural land and is one of the world's largest airport sites. An ambitious three-phase development plan anticipates KLIA to have three runways and two terminals each with two satellite terminals. Phase One involved the construction of the main terminal and one satellite terminal, giving a capacity of 25 million passengers, two full service runways.
The Phase One airport had sixty contact piers, twenty remote parking bays with eighty aircraft parking positions, four maintenance hangars and fire stations. Phase Two, designed to increase capacity to 35 million passengers per year is complete. Phase Three is anticipated to increase capacity to 100 million passengers per year. Kuala Lumpur International Airport was inaugurated by the 10th Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Tuanku Ja'afar of Negeri Sembilan, on 27 June 1998 at 20:30 MST, a week ahead of Hong Kong International Airport and in time for the 1998 Commonwealth Games; the first domestic arrival was Malaysia Airlines flight MH1263 from Kuantan at 07:10 MST. The first international arrival was Malaysia Airlines flight MH188 from Malé International Airport at 07:30 MST; the first domestic departure was Malaysia Airlines flight MH1432 to Langkawi at 07:20 MST. The inauguration of the airport was marked with problems. Aerobridge and bay allocation systems broke down, queues built up throughout the airport and baggage handling broke down.
Bags were lost and there were waits of over five hours. Most of these issues were remedied though baggage handling system was plagued with problems until it was put up for a complete replacement tender in 2007; the airport suffered reduced traffic with the general reduction in economic activity brought about by the East Asian financial crisis, SARS, bird flu epidemic, the global financial crisis, the swine flu pandemic. 1998 saw a reduction of passenger numbers as some airlines, including All Nippon Airways, British Airways and Northwest Airlines, terminated their loss making services to KLIA. KLIA's first full year of operations in 1999, in its Phase One manifestation, saw only 13.2 million passengers. Passenger numbers increased to 21.1 million in 2004 and 47 million in 2013 — though short of the estimated 25 million passengers per year by 2003. Kuala Lumpur International Airport has a first in the region; the aircraft movements on these runways are monitored by two Air Traffic Control Towers.
ATC Tower West standing at 133.8m, is the tallest ATC tower in the world. The current three runway system is capable of handling 78 landings per hour and is expected to increase to 108 landings per hour once upgrading of the Kuala Lumpur Flight Information Region is completed in 2019; these runways operate on different departure/arrival modes according to the air traffic requirements. KLIA features a number of modern design features that assist in the efficient operation of the airport, it is one of the first Asia Pacific airports to become 100% Bar Coded Boarding Pass capable. Malaysia Airlines. Malaysia Airlines operates its Flight Management Building at KLIA; the airport is part of the KLIA Aeropolis, is made up of two main terminals. KLIA Main was designed by Japanese architect Kisho Kurokawa, with an emphasis of natural lighting withi
Fall of Saigon
The Fall of Saigon, or the Liberation of Saigon, was the capture of Saigon, the capital of South Vietnam, by the People's Army of Vietnam and the Viet Cong on 30 April 1975. The event marked the end of the Vietnam War and the start of a transition period to the formal reunification of Vietnam into the Socialist Republic of Vietnam; the PAVN, under the command of General Văn Tiến Dũng, began their final attack on Saigon on April 29, 1975, with the Army of the Republic of Vietnam forces commanded by General Nguyễn Văn Toàn suffering a heavy artillery bombardment. This bombardment at the Tan Son Nhat International Airport killed the last two American servicemen killed in combat in Vietnam, Charles McMahon and Darwin Judge. By the afternoon of the next day, the PAVN had occupied the important points of the city and raised their flag over the South Vietnamese presidential palace; the city was renamed Hồ Chí Minh City, after the late North Vietnamese President Hồ Chí Minh. The capture of the city was preceded by Operation Frequent Wind, the evacuation of all the American civilian and military personnel in Saigon, along with tens of thousands of South Vietnamese civilians, associated with the southern regime.
The evacuation was the largest helicopter evacuation in history. In addition to the flight of refugees, the end of the war and the institution of new rules by the communists contributed to a decline in the city's population. Various names have been applied to these events; the Vietnamese government calls it the "Day of liberating the South for national reunification" or "Liberation Day", but the term "Fall of Saigon" is used in Western accounts. It is called the "Ngày mất nước", "Tháng Tư Đen", "National Day of Shame" or "National Day of Resentment". by many Overseas Vietnamese who were refugees from communism. The rapidity with which the South Vietnamese position collapsed in 1975 was surprising to most American and South Vietnamese observers, to the North Vietnamese and their allies as well. For instance, a memo prepared by the Central Intelligence Agency and U. S. Army Intelligence and published on March 5 indicated that South Vietnam could hold out through the current dry season—i.e. At least until 1976.
These predictions proved to be grievously in error. As that memo was being released, General Dũng was preparing a major offensive in the Central Highlands of Vietnam, which began on 10 March and led to the capture of Buôn Ma Thuột; the ARVN began a disorderly and costly retreat, hoping to redeploy its forces and hold the southern part of South Vietnam an enclave south of the 13th parallel. Supported by artillery and armor, the PAVN continued to march towards Saigon, capturing the major cities of northern South Vietnam at the end of March—Huế on the 25th and Đà Nẵng on the 28th. Along the way, disorderly South Vietnamese retreats and the flight of refugees—there were more than 300,000 in Đà Nẵng—damaged South Vietnamese prospects for a turnaround. After the loss of Đà Nẵng, those prospects had been dismissed as nonexistent by American CIA officers in Vietnam, who believed that nothing short of B-52 strikes against Hanoi could stop the North Vietnamese. By April 8, the North Vietnamese Politburo, which in March had recommended caution to Dũng, cabled him to demand "unremitting vigor in the attack all the way to the heart of Saigon."
On April 14, they renamed the campaign the "Hồ Chí Minh campaign", after revolutionary leader Hồ Chí Minh, in hopes of wrapping it up before his birthday on May 19. Meanwhile, South Vietnam failed to garner any significant increase in military aid from the United States, snuffing out President Nguyễn Văn Thiệu’s hopes for renewed American support. On April 9, PAVN forces reached Xuân Lộc, the last line of defense before Saigon, where the ARVN 18th Division made a last stand and held the city through fierce fighting for 11 days; the PAVN overran Xuân Lộc on April 20 despite heavy losses, on April 21 President Thiệu resigned in a tearful televised announcement in which he denounced the United States for failing to come to the aid of the South. The North Vietnamese front line was now just 26 miles from downtown Saigon; the victory at Xuân Lộc, which had drawn many South Vietnamese troops away from the Mekong Delta area, opened the way for PAVN to encircle Saigon, they soon did so, moving 100,000 troops in position around the city by April 27.
With the ARVN having few defenders, the fate of the city was sealed. The ARVN III Corps commander, General Toàn, had organized five centers of resistance to defend the city; these fronts were so connected as to form an arc enveloping the entire area west and east of the capital. The Cu Chi front, to the northwest, was defended by the 25th Division. South Vietnamese defensive forces around Saigon totaled 60,000 troops. However, as the exodus made it into Saigon, along with them were many ARVN soldiers, which swelled the "men under arms" in the city to over 250,000; these units were battered and leaderless, which threw the city into further anarchy. The rapid PAVN advances of March and early April led to increased concern in Saigon that the city, peaceful throughout the war and wh
PJSC Aeroflot – Russian Airlines known as Aeroflot, is the flag carrier and largest airline of the Russian Federation. The carrier is an open joint stock company that operates domestic and international passenger and services from its hub at Sheremetyevo International Airport. Aeroflot is one of the oldest airlines in the world, tracing its history back to 1923. During the Soviet era, Aeroflot was the Soviet national airline and the largest airline in the world. Following the dissolution of the USSR, the carrier has been transformed from a state-run enterprise into a semi-privatised company which ranked 19th most profitable airline in the world in 2007. Aeroflot is still considered the de facto national airline of Russia, it is 51%-owned by the Russian Government. As of September 2013, the Aeroflot Group had 30,328 employees. By the end of 2017, Aeroflot controlled 40% of the air market in Russia; the company has embarked on a fleet modernisation programme, extensive route restructuring and an image overhaul.
The airline joined SkyTeam in April 2006. On 17 January 1921, the Sovnarkom of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic published "About Air Transportation"; the document signed by Lenin set out the basic regulations on air transport over the territory of the RSFSR. The document was significant as it was the first time that a Russian state had declared sovereignty over its airspace. In addition, the document defined rules for the operation of foreign aircraft over the Soviet Union's airspace and territory. After Lenin issued an order, a State Commission was formed on 31 January 1921 for the purpose of civil aviation planning in the Soviet Union; as a result of the commission's plans, Glavvozdukhflot was established, it began mail and passenger flights on the Moscow-Oryol-Kursk-Kharkov route on 1 May 1921 using Sikorsky Ilya Muromets aircraft. This was followed by the formation of Deruluft-Deutsch Russische Luftverkehrs A. G. in Berlin on 11 November 1921, as a joint venture between the Soviet Union and Germany.
The company, whose aircraft were registered in both Germany and the Soviet Union, began operations on 1 May 1922 with a Fokker F. III flying between Königsberg and Moscow; the service was operated twice a week and restricted to the carriage of mail. On 3 February 1923 Sovnarkom approved plans for the expansion of the Red Air Fleet, it is this date, recognised as the beginning of civil aviation in the Soviet Union. After a resolution of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, the Enterprise for Friends of the Air Fleet was founded on 8 March 1923, followed by the formation of Dobrolet on 17 March 1923; the artist Alexander Rodchenko became involved in the ODVF at this time. He designed posters encouraging citizens to buy stock in Dobrolet and the famous "Winged Hammer and Sickle" logo still used by Aeroflot. Regular flights by Dobrolet from Moscow to Nizhniy Novgorod commenced on 15 July 1923. During the same period, an additional two airlines were established. During 1923 an agreement was signed establishing a subdivision of Dobrolet to be based in Tashkent, which would operate to points in Soviet Central Asia.
Services between Tashkent and Alma Ata began on 27 April 1924, by the end of 1924 the subdivision had carried 480 passengers and 500 kilograms of mail and freight, on a total of 210 flights. In March 1924, Dobrolet began operating flights from Sevastopol to Yalta and Yevpatoriya in the Crimea. Dobrolet's route network was extended during the 1925–1927 period to include Kazan and regular flights between Moscow and Kharkov were inaugurated. Plans were made for Dobrolet flights to Kharkov to connect with Ukrvozdukhput services to Kiev and Rostov-on-Don. During 1925, Dobrolet operated 2,000 flights over a distance of 1,000,000 kilometres, carrying 14,000 passengers and 127,500 kilograms of freight, on a route network extending to some 5,000 kilometres. Dobrolet was transformed from a Russian to an all-Union enterprise on 21 September 1926 as a result of Sovnarkom resolutions, in 1928 Dobrolet was merged with Ukrvozdukhput. Responsibility for all civil aviation activities in the Soviet Union came under the control of the Chief Directorate of the Civil Air Fleet on 25 February 1932, on 25 March 1932 the name "Aeroflot" was adopted for the entire Soviet Civil Air Fleet.
The Communist Party of the Soviet Union Congress in 1933 set out development plans for the civil aviation industry for the following five years, which would see air transportation becoming one of the primary means of transportation in the Soviet Union, linking all major cities. The government implemented plans to expand the Soviet aircraft industry to make it less dependent on foreign built aircraft. Expansion of air routes which had taken shape in the late 1920s, continued into the 1930s. Local services were expanded in Soviet Central Asia and the Soviet Far East, which by the end of the second Five-Year Plan in 1937 was 35,000 kilometres in length out of a total network of some 93,300 kilometres; the agreement between the Soviet Union and Germany relating to Deruluft expired on 1 January 1937 and wasn't ren