Kuwait Airways halts Beirut flights as Syria tensions grow

Kuwait Airways halts Beirut flights as Syria tensions grow
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Pic. AFP

Kuwait City: Kuwait’s national carrier halted flights to Beirut on Thursday citing security concerns, after an air safety watchdog warned of potential military strikes on Syria in the coming days.

Kuwait Airways said that it took the decision “on the basis of credible security warnings received from the Cypriot authorities regarding the danger of flying over Lebanon’s airspace”.

The changes would stand “until further notice”, the airline said on Twitter.

The move came after the European Aviation Safety Agency alerted airlines on Tuesday of the possible launch of “air-to-ground and/or cruise missiles within the next 72 hours”, urging them to take precautionary measures.

Other international carriers including Air France and Lebanon’s Middle East Airlines have also modifed their flight plans.

US President Donald Trump warned Wednesday that “missiles will be coming” in response to an alleged chemical attack in Syria.

If the US action follows the pattern of a previous punitive strike on Syria last year, it will begin with a salvo of cruise missiles fired from American warships in the Mediterranean.

Russia’s ambassador to Beirut warned any US missiles would be shot down “as well as the sources they were fired from”, raising the stakes of a regional confrontation.

Agence France-Presse