For the First Time in 27 Years, a Saudi Plane Lands in Baghdad


A Saudi passenger plane touched down at Baghdad’s international airport on Wednesday for the first time in more than a quarter-century, according to Iraq’s Transportation Ministry.

Transport Minister Kazem Fangan al-Hamami and Saudi Arabia’s acting ambassador to Iraq, Abdul Aziz al-Shammari, were both present at the airport to welcome the plane, according to a ministry statement.

A second Saudi passenger plane — belonging to national carrier Saudi Airlines — is due to arrive in Baghdad on Thursday, the statement added.

On Sunday, the Transportation Ministry announced that Baghdad and Riyadh had signed an agreement to begin reciprocal flights between the two capitals following a 27-year hiatus.

The agreement also calls for the provision of ground services to Saudi planes in Iraq and vice versa, according to the ministry.

All flights between Saudi Arabia and Iraq have remained frozen since the latter’s 1990 invasion of Kuwait.


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