Pakistan extends ban on domestic, international flights


KARACHI, APR 18 (DNA) – Pakistan has extended the ban on domestic and international flights till April 30 in the wake of the coronavirus situation, media reported on Saturday.

The Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority in a statement said that the ban on all flight operations has been extended till 30th of April. Director Air Transport CAA has issued a NOTAM (Notice to Airmen) regarding extension in the suspension of flight operations.

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As per the decision of the Government of Pakistan, the suspension of International and Domestic flight operations as effected earlier has been extended upto Thursday, April 30, 2020 at 2359 hours PST, the CAA statement said.

However, relief and cargo flights will be operated with special permission. To repatriate thousands of Pakistanis stranded in different countries due to the coronavirus pandemic, PIA operating special flights from April 15 and will continue to do till April 20.

The aviation authority had earlier ordered that all inbound flights shall be subjected to thorough checking for COVID-19 as per established procedures including screening, swab test and quarantine as per the advice of the health professionals.

Earlier, a NOTAM was released by CAA’s director air transport after the foreign ministry accepted the request of the German Embassy in Pakistan to allow a chartered flight of Qatar Airways for transporting German citizens and diplomatic staff on April 4.

The aviation authority had also released an advisory for the chartered flight that transport over 225 passengers including German citizens and diplomats from two destinations including Karachi and Islamabad.

Before it 300 Canadian nationals left for Toronto via Pakistan International Airlines’ (PIA) special flight from Lahore airport.

Pakistani authorities had also granted permission to operate a chartered flight on the request of the US Embassy to transport US citizens, American and British diplomats.

A special plane arrived from Cairo at the Karachi airport to airlift the US citizens including members of the US embassy in Pakistan.

The flight MSR-3200 was allowed to land at the airport on a special permission from the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). It carried 135 passengers including 16 members of the embassy team. =DNA