ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – The Iraqi Federal Government will soon lift its international flight ban on both the Erbil and Sulaimani airports and resume flights, a source revealed on Monday.
Several sources, who asked to remain anonymous, confirmed the rumors with Kurdistan 24 and insisted Baghdad had decided to implement the decision, without providing further details.
The flight ban came into effect on Sep. 29 last year, days after the Kurdistan Region’s referendum on independence which saw 93 percent of voters favoring statehood.
Since then, Baghdad has extended the ban twice, the most recent extension being that of Feb. 26, prolonging the international flight ban until May 31.
Kurdish officials have repeatedly stated that the ban has negatively affected the economy of the Kurdistan Region, forcing many companies to close their offices and lay off staff.
Recently, Chancellor of the Kurdistan Region Security Council (KRSC) Masrour Barzani visited Washington DC and met with many US White House and State Department officials. They discussed outstanding issues between Erbil and Baghdad, including the flight ban, the Kurdistan Region’s budget share and other Kurdish constitutional rights which are being violated.
Editing by Nadia Riva