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Saudi Arabia suspends Umrah pilgrimage over new COVID-19 variant

  • Saudi Arabia's General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) suspended all international flights for one week
  • Pakistan International Airlines also announced the cancellation of flights to and from Saudi Arabia
21 Dec, 2020

(Karachi) Amid the spread of new coronavirus variant, the Government of Saudi Arabia has suspended international Umrah, local media reported on Monday.

As per details, Saudi Arabia's General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) suspended all international flights for one week in response to a new strain of the coronavirus. As a result of the flight suspension, the Umrah of international pilgrims will also be suspended temporarily.

The decisions were made in response to the emergence of a potent new strain of the virus in the United Kingdom (UK) and other European countries.

However, Some flights will be allowed to operate in exceptional circumstances.

Meanwhile, in wake of the decision, the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) announced the cancellation of flights to and from Saudi Arabia.

The spokesperson of the national carrier, Abdullah Khan, said that PIA flights to and from Saudi Arabia have been cancelled from December 21.

The cancelled flights of PIA include PK-9739 and PK-9739 from Multan-Jeddah-Lahore, many other flights i.e. Lahore-Jeddah-Lahore, Islamabad-Dammam-Islamabad, Lahore-Dammam-Lahore, Karachi-Madinah and Madinah-Karachi, Lahore-Madinah, Madinah-Multan and Madinah-Multan, Karachi-Jeddah-Karachi.

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