Middle East

Iraqi Airways to resume Kuwait flights after 22 years

A general view of Kuwait City. REUTERS

KUWAIT CITY: Iraqi Airways will resume direct flights to Kuwait from February 16 after a 22-year stoppage due to the Iraqi invasion of the Gulf state, a top Kuwaiti civil aviation official said on Tuesday.

"Iraqi Airways will resume flights to Kuwait on February 16 ... after the civil aviation authority approved a request" by its Iraqi counterpart, Fawwaz al-Farah, head of Kuwait's civil aviation authority, was quoted as saying by the official KUNA news agency.

Iraqi Airways will fly four times a week to Kuwait airport from Baghdad with one direct flight, two via the Shiite holy city of Najaf and one through Arbil in Iraq's Kurdistan, Farah said.

Kuwait Airways does not operate any flights to Iraq but the private Al-Jazeera carrier has been operating for the past few years, especially to Najaf, which lies south of Baghdad.

Kuwait and Iraq's national carriers reached an agreement last month to resolve a 22-year-old commercial dispute between them under which Iraqi Airways has agreed to pay $500 million to Kuwait Airways.

Under orders from former dictator Saddam Hussein, Iraqi troops invaded Kuwait in August 1990 but were driven out seven months later by a US-led international coalition.





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