Picture used for illustrative purpose.
Gulf Today, Staff Reporter
UAE carriers Emirates and Etihad have suspended all flights to Saudi Arabia from July 5, airlines’ officials said.
The decision was taken after Saudi Arabia barred all flights from UAE, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Ethiopia.
The Saudi authorities said that the suspension was due to spike in coronavirus cases and the emergence of new COVID variants, namely the Delta.
Etihad Airways responded to a query of a Saudi traveller asking for flight details.
The traveller, Naif asked, “Is the flight between Riyadh and Abu Dhabi canceled…?
Etihad wrote to Naif, “The flights from UAE to Saudi Arabia will be suspended until further notice due to the latest travel ban. Please send us a DM for more details.”
The Dubai-based airline, Emirates followed suit.
Emirates suspended all flights from the kingdom till further notice after the travel ban came into effect on July 4.
Further more, Emirates on humanitarian gesture, is operating special flights between the kingdom and UAE on July 4 to bring back Emiratis and residents.
The emirates flights will also take Saudi residents in the UAE to their native cities to ensure that no one is stranded.
Emirates wrote on Twitter, “In light of announced travel restrictions, Emirates is operating extra flights to and from Jeddah, Riyadh and Dammam today, 4 July to support those affected get back to KSA, and enable UAE Nationals and residents currently in the Kingdom to safely return to the UAE.
The UAE has also barred Emiratis from travelling to these two countries. The suspension includes inbound transit passengers but not transit flights coming to the UAE and heading to these countries.
A government body dealing with the pandemic said the monthlong travel restrictions would start from Saturday and aim to prevent the spread into the country of coronavirus strains from other countries which are believed to be more contagious.
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