Qatar Airways suspends all flights to Saudi Arabia

Qatar Airways

Qatar Airways said on Monday it had suspended all flights to Saudi Arabia as a major diplomatic crisis escalated in the Gulf region.

The move by the Doha-based carrier came just hours after Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt cut diplomatic ties with Doha over accusations it supports extremism.

Several airlines from those countries earlier announced they would no longer fly to Qatar.

“Qatar Airways has suspended all flights to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia” until 1159 GMT the same day, a statement from the airline said.

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A spokeswoman said it was unclear if the suspension would be extended.

Qatar Airways flies to nine cities in Saudi Arabia.

UAE carriers Emirates, Etihad, Fly Dubai and Air Arabia, as well as Saudi Airlines, all announced earlier on Monday they would suspend flights to Doha starting from Tuesday morning.

It was not immediately clear if Qatar Airways would also suspend flights to other countries.

Regional powerhouse Saudi Arabia on Monday ordered its nationals to leave Qatar within 14 days and barred Qataris from the kingdom.

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Saudi Arabia has also closed its border with Qatar.