In a significant development, Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has been allowed to operate direct flights between Pakistan and the United States due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Last week, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the PIA, Air Marshal Arshad Malik, wrote a letter to the US ambassador and the State Department seeking permission to operate special flights to repatriate stranded Pakistanis.
The US Transport Department granted the permission on Pakistan’s request to evacuate its citizens stranded in the United States.
Under the development, PIA has been allowed to run as many as 12 flights a month to bring back its people from the States. PIA spokesperson, Abdullah Khan, said that the permission was possible after an improved security situation in the country.
CEO PIA, Air Marshal Arshad Malik thanked Prime Minister Imran Khan, Foreign Ministry, and Aviation Ministry for making this possible.
The development is part of the national flag carrier’s humanitarian operations to bring back Pakistani expats stranded across the globe. So far, PIA has airlifted nearly 8,000 people from various countries.