Etihad Airways plans to launch regular service to Iraq

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DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Etihad Airways says it plans to launch regular flights to Baghdad next week, making it the latest carrier to begin flying passengers to the Iraqi capital.

The carrier said Sunday the new service from its base in the United Arab Emirates capital Abu Dhabi is subject to government and regulatory approval.

The Etihad announcement on Sunday also said the service is planned to take off on April 26, with five return flights a week to Baghdad using Airbus A320s.

Etihad expects to expand the flight to northern Iraqi city of Irbil on June 1.

Airlines are slowly returning to war-ravaged Iraq. German airline Lufthansa said in January it is planning to resume flights to the country this summer.