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Inaugural Gulf Air flight arrives in Baghdad


National carrier Gulf Air has flown its inaugural flight to Baghdad. The flight, on 1 September 2009, marked the start of a new five-time weekly service the carrier is operating to the Iraqi capital.

Gulf Air chief executive officer Mr Samer Majali led a delegation of senior Gulf Air executives, board members as well as government, business, diplomatic and media representatives on the maiden voyage, including Iraq’s Ambassador to Bahrain, His Excellency, Mr Ghassan Mohsen Hussain and Bahrain’s Ambassador to Iraq, His Excellency, Mr Salah Al Malki.

On arriving at Baghdad International Airport, Gulf Air CEO Samer Majali addressed guests and media saying: “This is a great milestone for a new, forward-looking Gulf Air. We were the first and only full-service GCC carrier to operate into Baghdad back in 1976 and today we reaffirm that leadership position. I am pleased to announce to you here today in Iraq of our plans to extend our network into the country even further. My plan is that we will soon operate to a total of five destinations in Iraq: Baghdad; Najaf; Erbil; Basra and Solamnia. Our services to Najaf and Erbil will commence as soon as 15 September.”

“Our decision to resume flights to Iraq comes as the country continues to make great progress in rebuilding, following years of unrest. We are proud to be serving Iraq once again offering a direct service from our home hub in Bahrain and excellent connections from Europe. Iraq has enormous commercial potential for Gulf Air and building on our experience and knowledge of operating there over many years, our aim is to become the market leader operating regular services to five key cities within the country.”

Iraq’s Ambassador to Bahrain, His Excellency Mr Ghassan Mohsen Hussain, said: “We are delighted that Gulf Air has taken advantage of the recently agreed Air Service Agreement between our two countries so quickly and that the trusted ’golden falcon’ will be flying into Baghdad once again. As Iraq transforms and develops, a direct link into the GCC and onwards to Europe will be invaluable both for attracting direct investment into the country and for businesses and services in Iraq to prosper. In years to come, we also hope to see our tourism industry flourish as people discover our rich culture and ancient wonders.”

As well as the special Gulf Air delegation, more than 90 Gulf Air customers were also onboard the inaugural flight taking immediate advantage of the new direct flights from Bahrain.

About Gulf Air
Gulf Air, the national carrier of the Kingdom of Bahrain, was founded in 1950 and is one of the oldest airlines in the Middle East. It is owned by Bahrain Mumtalakat Holdings Company.

Backed by more than half a century of experience, expertise and customer care, Gulf Air has established as a powerful brand and today, it is the carrier of choice for most people in the region and it was the first GCC to offer flights to Baghdad. However, its goal has remained unchanged - the commitment to providing state-of-the-art flying experience, complemented by its traditional Arabian hospitality.

Gulf Air is the Official Airline and Sponsor of the Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix 2009 and London-based football club Queens Park Rangers.

For further information:
Ms. Katherine Kaczynska
Gulf Air
P.O. Box: 138
Kingdom of Bahrain
00973 17338416


 flights to Baghdad
 Gulf Air
 flights from Bahrain
 Baghdad International Air

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