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The announcement was in the wake of Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, Egypt and a few other countries, severing diplomatic ties with Qatar, alleging that the country is supporting terrorism. The countries also imposed air travel ban and some even barred using of their airspace, media reports said.
The airlines said that in the past week, the airline has flown approximately 1,200 flights between Doha and its network of more than 150 destinations around the globe, with 90 per cent of those flights departing within 15 minutes of their scheduled departure time.
The airline recently launched direct service to Dublin, Republic of Ireland.
Qatar Airways' service to Nice, France, will commence on July 4, and flights to Skopje, Republic of Macedonia, on July 17.
Other new destinations planned for the remainder of this year and 2018 include Las Vegas (US), Canberra (Australia), Douala (Cameroon), Libreville (Gabon), Medan (Indonesia), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Santiago (Chile) and Sarajevo (Bosnia and Herzegovina), and others.
Earlier this week the airline released its annual report for the fiscal year 2017, revealing a net profit of $541 million, a 21.7 per cent year-on-year increase. The results also show an annual revenue increase of 10.4 per cent.
Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker, said: “Qatar Airways’ global operations continue to run smoothly, with the vast majority of our network unaffected by the current circumstances. Our focus is on supporting any passengers impacted by the current situation and ensuring that we continue to deliver our award-winning service. Our network expansion continues with two new destinations launching in the next month. As far as we are concerned, it is business as usual.”
In light of the blockade, the airline said that it has significantly increased the operations of its global call centre and social media to ensure that customers are not inconvenienced. The airline has extended its commercial policy to ensure greater flexibility for refunds and rebooking for any passengers whose flight is impacted by the recent travel bans.
The airline has also introduced new functionality on Facebook to provide customers with flexible call-back options.
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