No plans of resuming commercial flights between Kabul and Pakistan yet: PIA backtracks

WION Web Team
Islamabad, Pakistan Published: Sep 12, 2021, 08:41 AM(IST)

Representataive image Photograph:( Reuters )

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'We had actually applied for a charter flight permission to Kabul that was taken up by media and they actually said PIA is now resuming its regular flight operation from Sept 13, which is not the case,' the spokesperson claimed

On September 11, multiple media reports had stated that Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) is ready to start commercial flights to Kabul. However, PIA has clarified against it now.

Earlier, news agency AFP had quoted PIA spokesman Abdullah Hafeez Khan who claimed that PIA had received all technical clearances to resume flight operations in Kabul. He had also stated that the first commercial flight between Islamabad and Taliban-controlled Kabul will fly on September 13.

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However, the PIA spokesperson has backtracked now and has denied plans of PIA resuming commercial flights to Kabul just yet, local newspaper Dawn reported.

He claimed his statements had been taken out of context by western news agency, AFP. "We had actually applied for a charter flight permission to Kabul that was taken up by media and they actually said PIA is now resuming its regular flight operation from Sept 13, which is not the case," Voice of America quoted him as saying.

The PIA had temporarily suspended all commercial flights between Afghanistan and Pakistan on August 16 as Taliban took control over Afghanistan after the former leader Ashraf Ghani fled the country.

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Meanwhile, local reports suggest Taliban is gearing up to resume commercial operations at the Kabul International Airport soon.

Taliban took over the airport after the US troops completed withdrawal process on August 31. Since then, images and reports coming from local media houses suggest that Taliban have started cleaning, repairing and maintaining the airport with the hope of restarting international flights soon.

As of now, Qatar Airways has chartered two flights since the US troops' withdrawal, which were solely flown into Kabul with the objective of rescuing American and other nationality citizens from the Taliban-controlled Afghanistan.

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