Last updated: 18 August, 2015

Dubai’s Emirates Airline to resume flights to Baghdad

Dubai’s Emirates Airline said Tuesday it will resume passenger flights to the Iraqi capital in September, months after they were suspended over safety concerns.

Emirates will operate four weekly flights from Dubai to Baghdad, served by an A330-200 aircraft starting from September 17, the carrier said in a statement published by the UAE’s official WAM news agency.

“After conducting an exhaustive safety and security review, we have decided to restart services between Dubai and Baghdad,” said Sheikh Majid al-Mualla, a company vice president.

In January, Emirates was among several carriers to suspend flights to Baghdad after a bullet hit the fuselage of a flydubai airliner, its sister no-frills firm, on its descent in the capital. A young girl was lightly wounded in the incident.

Many have since resumed the flights, including Turkish Airlines and Lebanon’s Middle East Airlines.

Airlines flying over Iraq had feared that jihadists from the Islamic State group might acquire weapons able to hit cruising airliners.

Iraqi security forces are battling to regain ground from IS in Anbar province, west of Baghdad.

Baghdad International Airport is located near the border with Anbar.

Emirates operates four weekly services to Iraq’s northern city of Arbil and a twice-daily service to Basra in the south.

“We want to continue to support the development of economic opportunities in Baghdad by increasing access to international markets and inward investment,” Mualla said.