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Published on Thursday, December 17, 2015

Airline to axe London to New York service

Kuwait Airways has stopped taking bookings for flights between London and New York to avoid having to sell tickets to Israelis.

The airline had been ordered by the US Department of Transportation to stop refusing to transport Israeli citizens between the US and any third country after an Israeli citizen, Eldad Gatt, was refused a seat on a flight in October.

Yesterday, the DoT said the airline had informed it that it would be 'eliminating' services between JFK and Heathrow.

However, one of the airline's UK sales agents confirmed to TravelMole today that it was continuing to operate its daily flights between London and New York for passengers who are already booked and ticketed, but it is not accepting any new reservations.

The flights will operate until February 2016, after which they will be suspended until the issue with the US government has been resolved, said the sales agent. "We have some issues with the US government so our services will be suspended in Februay," she said. "Until then, we are obliged to carry our passengers who are already booked and ticketed."

The airline is planning to continue to operate its three times a week services between Heathrow and Kuwait City and between JFK and Kuwait City.

Kuwait Airways claims that it is prevented from carrying Israeli passengers on any flights by Kuwaiti law, which bars citizens from agreements 'with entities or persons residing in Israel or with Israeli citizenship'.

A Kuwait Airways had said 'the policy isn't discriminatory because it will sell tickets to passengers regardless of race, national origin or religion - so long as they hold a passport valid in Kuwait.'

The airline has filed a counter lawsuit against the DOT which is still open and could yet go to court.

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  • Empty flights are another reason that an airline cancels routes

    And frankly, with nobody willing to fly from New York to Kuwait, because the public are worried about terrorist attacks on any Arab airline...I can understand the cancellations.

    By RANDY MAGED, Wednesday, January 13, 2016

  • A typical Islamic threat

    I really hope USA Government will be very strict with Kuwait airways. When people start to get enough of this double standard: If any airline would ban Kuwait citizens to travel with any international airlines, it would be racism. But Arabs thing they can do anything they want. Where is UK Government comments and action. This really makes me angry . We are expected to respect Islam rules, but hei ho, where is their respect towards our, western rules which is based on RESPECT!!!!!!

    By Jussi Lahtinen, Thursday, December 17, 2015

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