Basra flights postponed

Flights to Basra, which were due to start this week, have been postponed for seven days. The delay has been blamed on a lack of equipment and facilities at the airport, rather than any security concerns.

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By  Neil Denslow Published  August 26, 2003

Flights to Basra, which were due to start this week, have been postponed for seven days. The delay has been blamed on a lack of equipment and facilities at the airport, rather than any security concerns.

Six carriers are due to start flying to Basra — LOT Polish Airways, Gulf Air, Qatar Airways, Emirates Airline, Royal Jordanian and SAS — however, the start of flights has been delayed after the coalition authorities in Iraq said that the airport was not ready.

“Initially we expected to begin services to Basra on August 30,” says Ali Al Rais, Qatar Airways’ regional manager for the Arabian Peninsula, Iran, CIS & Central Asia. “However, coalition authorities have informed us today (August 26) that all commercial services to Basra have been delayed while they make final preparations to receive commercial passengers at Basra International Airport.”

Qatar Airways now expects to begin its weekly service on September 6 instead. “The delay does not diminish our commitment to begin services to Basra,” says Al Rais.

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