Following the news of the new mutant strain of the coronavirus identified in a number of countries, UAE airlines Emirates, Etihad and Air Arabia have suspended flights to Saudi Arabia “until further notice”.
This announcement comes as Saudi Arabia suspended late on Sunday, all international commercial flights for a renewable week.
This new, more infectious Covid-19 strain has been identified in a number of countries including the UK, several other European countries, Australia as well as South Africa.
Dubai-based Emirates posted the following notice on its website:
Due to the closure of borders as directed by the Saudi authorities, Emirates will be suspending flights to and from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia until further notice.”
They added :
“We regret any inconvenience caused, affected customers should contact their travel agent or Emirates contact centre for rebooking options.”
Abu Dhabi-based Etihad, too, has also suspended its flights temporarily, until further notice.
A spokesperson said:
“With immediate effect, Etihad Airways will temporarily suspend its passenger services between Abu Dhabi and all destinations in Saudi Arabia until further notice, based on the directives of the Saudi authorities to limit the spread of Covid-19.The safety of its customers and crew is Etihad’s highest priority and we regret any inconvenience the suspension may cause.”
It’s Not Just The UAE
It’s not just in the UAE. Countries all over the world have started banning flights and travelers from the UK.
On Sunday, the British health minister deemed that this new strain was “out of control”, so it makes complete sense that precautions are being taken.