Saudi Meshaal Al Anzi (C) accompanies his Qatari sister Marzoka and her son upon their arrival at King Khalid Airport in Riyadh on Monday. AFP
Gulf Today Report
Following the signing of the Al Ula Declaration at the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit recently, Qatar-Saudi flights resumed on Monday.
A Qatar Airways service to Riyadh took off from windswept Doha airport around 1100 GMT and touched down around 1200 GMT on Monday.
A Qatar Airways airplane takes off from Hamad International Airport. AFP
It was the first commercial flight between Qatar and Saudi Arabia in three and a half years.
Relatives at arrivals hall of Riyadh's King Khalid International Airport waited eagerly for their kin and the moment they emerged out families hugged and laughed.
Two men were seen waiting, holding large bunches of flowers which they gave to two women who arrived with a child.
"Thank God, may God save the (Saudi) King, the Crown Prince and the Rulers of all the Gulf. It's a great feeling," said one tearful man on being reunited with his nephew in Riyadh."I am very happy! Thanks to God we have been reunited again," said his newly arrived nephew as the family kissed and embraced.
At Doha, airport staff filmed aircraft taxiing on the runway, anxious to ensure they got a clip of the relevant plane taking off, according to an media reporter on the ground.
A Saudi Airlines plane will also fly on Monday from Riyadh to Doha, departing the kingdom at 1340 GMT according to its online schedule, with services from Jeddah expected to start at a later date.
Passengers heading to the waiting lounge to take the Riyadh flight at Hamad Airport. AFP
Just as the first flight to Riyadh was preparing to take off, Qatar Airways tweeted that services to Jeddah and Dammam would resume later in the week.
Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates have both opened their airspace to Qatari aviation under the deal.
Monday's flight flew straight across Bahrain according to specialist flight tracker FlightAware.
Only a trickle of cars arrived at the palm tree-lined, whitewashed border post to make the short crossing to the Saudi side after news broke that the frontier had reopened.
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