Air flights between Erbil, Tehran airports to resume next week

Erbil International Airport

Erbil ( – Air flights between the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region and Iran are scheduled to resume next week following a few months’ hiatus due to an air embargo Baghdad had imposed on international flights to Kurdish airports last year.

Spokesman of the Kurdish Ministry of Transportation Omid Mohammed told BasNews that the first air flight between Erbil and Tehran airports since Baghdad’s lifting of its air embargo on Kurdistan will be operated on Friday, April 27.

The spokesman stressed that several world countries expressed their willingness to take similar steps and resume flights to Kurdish airports in the near future.

Baghdad had suspended air flights to and from Kurdish airports after the Kurds voted overwhelmingly to break away from Iraq in a referendum held on Sept. 25, defying the central government in Baghdad as well as neighboring Turkey and Iran who have their own Kurdish minorities.

Baghdad has, since then, demanded Kurdish authorities to hand over the management of the two airports to the federal government. But last month, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi decided to lift the air embargo on the two Kurdish airports.

For his part, Kurdish Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani hailed Baghdad’s decision as an “important step” towards the settlement of other pending issues between Baghdad and Erbil.

He expressed hope that the remaining issues, atop of which are disputed areas, would be solved following the upcoming parliamentary elections, slated for May 12.

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