Emirates airline resumes flights between Tehran and Dubai

Dubai-based Emirates airlines resumed flights between Tehran and Dubai on Friday after a five-month break due to shutdowns to curb the spread of coronavirus.

18 July 2020
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Dubai-based Emirates airlines resumed flights between Tehran and Dubai on Friday after a five-month break due to shutdowns to curb the spread of coronavirus.

An incoming passenger crosses with his luggage through a disinfection tunnel upon arriving on an Emirates flight at the Iranian capital Tehrans Imam Khomeini International Airport on July 17, 2020. Photo: AFP

Dubai-based Emirates airlines resumed flights to the Iranian capital on Friday after a five-month break due to shutdowns to curb the spread of coronavirus.

Iran, the worst-hit country in the Middle East, has been scrambling to contain the pandemic since it reported its first two COVID-19 deaths in February.

The 16 passengers on the Emirates flight from Dubai passed through a disinfection tunnel and had their body temperature checked upon arrival at Tehran’s airport.

In the departures lounge, masked outgoing passengers lined up at the Emirates check-in counter while an airport worker disinfected dozens of luggage trolleys.

The United Arab Emirates was among a list of countries that suspended all air links with Iran in February, along with nearby Armenia, Iraq, Kuwait and Turkey.

The UAE is a key international transit route for Iranians and had daily flights to Iran.

This picture taken on July 17, 2020 shows an Emirates Boeing 777-31H aircraft taxying upon arrival at the Iranian capital Tehrans Imam Khomeini International Airport. Photo: AFP

Direct flights between the southern Iranian city of Shiraz and the Emirati city of Sharjah also resumed on 3 July after a four-month gap. United Arab Emirates' flydubai has also announced plans to resume flights to Iran.

Meanwhile, the national flag carrier Iran Air resumed its flights between Tehran and Istanbul on 13 July after they were suspended on 26 February. The airline’s flights to the European cities of Manchester and Gothenburg have also resumed.

Iran’s health ministry on Friday raised the overall virus toll to more than 13,790 deaths, with 183 new fatalities, and over 269,400 confirmed cases.

Iran has refrained from imposing full lockdowns but closed schools and canceled public gatherings. It banned travel between provinces in March but lifting the order the next month.

The rising toll has prompted authorities to make masks mandatory in enclosed public spaces and allow worst-hit provinces to reimpose restrictions, with the capital Tehran among the latest.

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