Despite growing concerns that Iraq is spiralling into a state of all out civil war, a major European airline has announced plans to begin flying scheduled flights to the country.
From 11th December, Austrian Airlines will begin flying twice weekly flights from Vienna on Monday and Fridays, with a connection available from London Heathrow, to the city of Erbil in Iraq.
The city of Erbil is recognised as a safe gateway to Iraq and offers rapid overland access to the cities of Mosul, Kirkuk and Sulaymaniyah. Erbil itself is the fourth largest city in Iraq with a population approaching one million. International companies are already active in Erbil developing and expanding the economy, while the United Nations Organisation has plans to establish it’s Iraq support point in the city.
“Erbil is truly a milestone in the development of the Austrian route network. Once again, it will allow us to underline our pioneering role and specialisation in the form of our Focus East programme of services to Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Far East,” commented Austrian Management Board member Dr. Josef E Burger.
“With our flights to Egypt, Iran, Jordan, Libya, Syria and the United Arab Emirates, we are already the number three carrier in Europe when measured by service into the Middle East.”
Austrian’s Focus East strategy has seen the airline pioneering many new routes. Erbil in Northern Iraq is now added to cities including Odessa, Dnepropetrovsk, Sarajevo, Pristina and Krasnodar.
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