Kuwait denies reports of restarting commercial flights from mid-June

By: News Desk      Published: 12:50 AM, 22 May, 2020
Kuwait denies reports of restarting commercial flights from mid-June
–File photo

Kuwait’s Civil Aviation has denied a report about restarting commercial flights at Kuwait International Airport on June 15, according to Gulf News.

The department also denied that 300 Kuwaitis travelled after signing an affidavit. It, however, said a very limited number were allowed to travel due to exceptional circumstances.

Earlier, a newspaper reported Kuwait’s Civil Aviation is ready to operate commercial flights to and from Kuwait International Airport from mid-June, with an initial operational capacity of 40 per cent.

The newspaper quoted Deputy Director of Kuwait’s Civil Aviation, Saleh Al Fadaghi, as saying the Civil Aviation Administration is ready for any plan submitted by the cabinet, whether that concerns evacuation or gradual restart.

“It is expected that we operate with a capacity of 40 per cent, as we have instructed the competent authorities to conduct precautionary maintenance of equipment and devices in all airport buildings, especially that Kuwait Airport was operating with a very small capacity, because of the closures witnessed by the world’s airports,” he said.

Al Fadaghi reportedly said: “We are currently working to be ready in the event that instructions come from the competent authorities to restart and open the air space gradually, according to international laws and health organisations, and we will adhere to the requirements set, most notably the social distancing, wearing of the masks, covering the hands and sterilising the airport and devices on a daily basis with all flights, in addition to the requirements for airlines and adherence to precautions imposed by the World Aviation Organizations, ICAO and IATA.”

Kuwait International Airport, since the spread of the coronavirus in China, have taken all health precautions, and we worked on many fronts, he said. Evacuation of Kuwaitis from abroad has been completed, except for those who could not return home for several reasons, including medical treatment and students’ exams. The second one is the evacuation of residents, and we have provided all the facilities for each country to submit requests through their embassies in coordination with the Kuwaiti Interior and Health ministries, to facilitate flights for all residents of any nationality. “Schedules are prepared by civil aviation for their return to their countries,” he said.

Al Fadaghi reportedly explained that cargo planes did not stop during the crisis period, over the past three months, as they were operating with a capacity of up to 20 flights per day, and they transported medical equipment, foodstuffs and basic commodities.

Al Fadaghi reportedly revealed that citizens wishing to travel in special cases are allowed, where they can book tickets on a number of airlines, provided that the travelers get the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ approval, which allows them after taking their signature on a letter of commitment to take responsibility for healthcare and financial costs, and to ensure their return in the event of any emergency occurring to them in the countries they wish to travel to.

He reportedly said since the beginning of this month, we have received a number of requests from Kuwaiti citizens wishing to travel to a number of countries, including GCC countries, London, America, and Cairo, where approximately 300 citizens have already left so far, on Qatar Airways, to Doha on transit, then to their destination.