First chartered flight carries 338 Americans back home
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The first of the six chartered flights carrying 338 passengers left Islamabad for the US, as the latest series of special operations began on Wednesday to airlift the stranded Americans back to their country.
Nineteen children were also among those boarding the plane which had earlier landed at the Islamabad International Airport after arriving from Sofia, Bulgaria.
Earlier on Tuesday, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) had formally allowed six chartered aircraft to land in Pakistan. The flights are being operated by US-based Omni Air International and would reach Islamabad and Karachi empty without any passengers.
As per reports, the second aircraft is scheduled to reach Karachi from Sharjah on April 22 (Wednesday).
Meanwhile, two flights from Sofia will land in Islamabad and Karachi respectively on April 23. Two more flights from Sofia are to reach the two cities on April 25.
The permission was granted as the United States has planned six chartered flights for its more than 2,200 citizens from Islamabad and Karachi to Washington’s Dulles Airport during this week.
The US embassy in Islamabad on Tuesday had reminded the American citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents in Pakistan to get registered before 11:59pm in case they wanted to return back to their country.
The US is not the only country to ensure the return of its nationals through special operations, as the UK too started chartered flights on Tuesday through the Qatar Airways.