Tuesday, August 28, 2007
(Kurdistan Observer) - The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and its airport authorities are in discussions with Austrian Airlines, and all are hopeful that the airline will resume flights to Erbil. The KRG was informed by Austrian on 25 August that it would temporarily suspend flights between Vienna and Erbil International Airport.
Austrian took the decision following an alleged incident at Sulaimani International Airport reported by the pilot of Nordic Airways, a Swedish charter airline, earlier this month. After thorough investigation, the KRG has found no evidence of foul play at or in the area surrounding Sulaimani airport. The Erbil International Airport authority understands the concerns that led Austrian to its decision, even though the alleged incident took place at another airport and KRG investigations have found no evidence to substantiate the report.
The airport authorities and the KRG would like to stress that the safety of passengers and crews is their priority. The cities of Erbil and Sulaimani and their international airports are peaceful. Security in and around both airports is the KRG’s highest priority and is maintained to the highest degree. The KRG, Erbil International Airport and Sulaimani International Airport are in discussion with Austrian, and all sides hope and expect Austrian Airlines to continue to operate its very successful and popular flights to Erbil. Meanwhile flights from Frankfurt, Dubai, Istanbul, Amman, Beirut, Tehran, Damascus and other cities to Erbil have maintained their regular schedules. Flights from Munich, Dubai, Amman and other cities to Suleimaniah continue.