Palestinian refugees in Lebanon receive first COVID-19 tests, Jordan discuss financial support with PLO

Lebanon began coronavirus examination trials at Al-Hamshari Hospital in the southern city of Sidon. (File/AFP)
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Updated 08 April 2020

Palestinian refugees in Lebanon receive first COVID-19 tests, Jordan discuss financial support with PLO

  • Lebanon began coronavirus examination trials at Al-Hamshari Hospital in the southern city of Sidon
  • Jordan’s Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi spoke with PLO about cooperation between Jordan and Palestine in facing the pandemic

DUBAI: Lebanon has begun the first round of COVID-19 tests for Palestinian refugees on Tuesday, while Jordan looks to mobilize efforts to financially support United Nations Palestinian refugee agency UNRWA amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Lebanon began coronavirus examination trials at Al-Hamshari Hospital in the southern city of Sidon, Lebanese national The Daily Star reported.
Palestinian refugees who live in cramped quarters are especially vulnerable to a potential COVID-19 outbreak.
The UNRWA has been criticized for its lack of assistance with preventative measures against the virus in the camps, the report said.
Meanwhile, Jordan’s Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi spoke with the Secretary-General of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s (PLO) executive committee, Saeb Erekat, about cooperation between Jordan and Palestine in facing the pandemic, The Jordan Times reported. 
Safadi and Erekat also covered efforts to mobilize financial support to UNRWA to enable it to continue offering vital services to refugees under the difficult circumstances that have placed additional burdens on the UN agency, which is already facing a financial crisis, according to a ministry statement.
Safadi discussed Jordan’s efforts to secure UNRWA’s - which is already facing a financial crisis - deficit of $14 million to face the crisis.


Emirates, Etihad to resume transit flights after UAE lifts suspension

Updated 04 June 2020

Emirates, Etihad to resume transit flights after UAE lifts suspension

  • The suspension was lifted late on Wednesday for UAE carriers
  • Foreign citizens remain banned from entering the Gulf Arab state except those holding UAE residency

DUBAI: Emirates and Etihad Airways will resume some transit flights after the United Arab Emirates (UAE) lifted a suspension on services where passengers stop off in the country to change planes, or for refuelling.
Dubai's Emirates, one of the world's biggest long-haul airlines, said on Thursday it would operate transit flights to 29 destinations in Asia, Europe and North America by June 15.
Abu Dhabi's Etihad, meanwhile, said it would carry transit passengers to 20 cities in Europe, Asia and Australia from June 10.
The suspension was lifted late on Wednesday for UAE carriers, more than two months after the Gulf Arab state halted all passenger flights in March as it introduced drastic measures to curb the spread of the new coronavirus.
It has since allowed a few, limited flights, while domestic restrictions such as the closure of shopping centres have been lifted.
Foreign citizens remain banned from entering the Gulf Arab state except those holding UAE residency, who require UAE government approval before returning.
The coronavirus pandemic, which has seen countries around the world shut their borders as they went into lockdown, has decimated the global airline industry as demand was crushed.
Many countries continue to enforce tight entry restrictions, including some countries banning foreign visitors. Airlines around the world have warned it will take years for travel demand to recover.