International flights to Saudi Arabia remain suspended, says Saudia

Saudi Arabia suspended international flights from March 15 as part of various measures to contain the spread of COVID-19. (SPA)
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Updated 03 September 2020

International flights to Saudi Arabia remain suspended, says Saudia

  • Announcement meant to quash rumors about resumption
  • Awdah initiative allows expats wanting to return to their home countries to leave the Kingdom

RIYADH: Saudi Arabian Airlines (Saudia) on Wednesday said international flights remain “suspended until further notice,” except for return flights for residents departing from the Kingdom and registering on the Awdah initiative.
Awdah is aimed at expats wanting to return to their home countries via an application system, enabling those holding exit and re-entry visas, final exit and visit visas of various kinds to return home by air travel.
The initiative can be accessed via the Awdah icon on the Absher platform, and by providing one’s iqama number, date of birth, mobile number, city of departure and arrival airport.
It is not necessary to have an account on Absher for expats of all nationalities to access this service.
Rumors have been circulating about the resumption of international flights since the recent listing by Saudia of certain travel conditions.
They include filling out a health disclaimer and handing it to the health control center upon arrival at the airport, as well as undergoing a seven-day self-quarantine at home.
Passengers should also register on the Tetamman app, which ensures the commitment of all those self-isolating and constant follow-up on their health. Through the app, passengers are required to undergo a daily health assessment.
Another app they are required to register on is Tawakkalna, which helps in the early detection of possible infections once users show symptoms.
The conditions also state that passengers should provide a home location on the apps within eight hours of arrival, and monitor any COVID-19 symptoms.
Meanwhile, Saudi Arabian Airlines published travel requirements mandated by the following countries: The UAE, Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain, Egypt, Lebanon, Tunisia, Morocco, China, the UK, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, Austria, Turkey, Greece, Bangladesh, the Philippines, Malaysia, South Africa, Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria and Indonesia.
Saudi Arabia suspended international flights from March 15 as part of various measures to contain the spread of COVID-19. Domestic flights resumed on May 31.
 


Houthis, Iran condemned over new drone attacks on KSA

Updated 26 October 2020

Houthis, Iran condemned over new drone attacks on KSA

  • One civilian injured by shrapnel after Saudi-led coalition intercepts four flying bombs launched from Yemen

JEDDAH: Houthi militias and their Iranian backers were condemned on Sunday after the Saudi-led coalition intercepted four explosive-laden drones in two attacks launched from Yemen targeting the south of the Kingdom.

Three of the drones were destroyed early on Saturday and a fourth on Sunday. Shrapnel that fell in Sarat Abidah governorate injured a civilian, and damaged five homes and three vehicles, said civil defense spokesman Capt. Mohammed Abdu Al-Sayed.

Iran was increasing its support to the Houthis to undermine efforts for peace, Dr. Hamdan Al-Shehri, the political analyst and international relations scholar, told Arab News.

“They want the Houthis to sabotage all they can in Saudi Arabia, regardless of whether their target is a populated area, oil facilities or even a sacred place. This adds tension to the area, and that is what Iran is working on.”

Iranians want the Houthis to sabotage all they can in Saudi Arabia, regardless of whether their target is a populated area, oil facilities or even a sacred place. This adds tension to the area, and that is what Iran is working on.

Dr. Hamdan Al-Shehri, political analyst and international relations scholar

Al-Shehri said the situation in Yemen would remain the same unless the legitimate government was returned to Yemen, Security Council Resolution 2216 was put into practice and the Houthi militia were removed.

“Without these things, the Yemen crisis will not end and the whole region will remain in tension.”

The Houthis did not differentiate between military sites and civilian locations, he said.

“Their objective is to damage all places they can reach in Saudi Arabia, and their latest attempts to attack a populated area are nothing new.

“They have also targeted airports and some Aramco oil facilities. If the Aramco attack had not been contained, the damage would have affected the whole Eastern region. They have also attempted to target Makkah, where pilgrims and worshippers were performing their rituals.

“They don’t care. If you look back at what the Revolutionary Guards did at the Grand Mosque, you will realize it is not strange that the Houthis are trying to destroy everything in Saudi Arabia. The strange thing is the silence of the world toward what is happening.”