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Iraqi Airways is to start flying from Manchester airport with two new weekly services.
The national flag carrier of Iraq will serve Sulaymaniyah and Erbil from March 15.
Erbil is the largest city and capital of the Kurdistan region in Iraq, while Sulaymaniyah is a city in southern Kurdistan.
Flight to Erbil will depart Manchester on Wednesdays and Sulaymaniyah flights will depart on Sundays.
Both routes will be operated by a new 162-seat Boeing 737-800, with return fares starting at £383.
Manchester Airports Group chief commercial officer, Ken O’Toole, said: “We are pleased to welcome Iraqi Airways to Manchester Airport and further increase the options and choice for passengers travelling to and from the Middle East.
“Manchester is now the only airport outside of London to offer these routes with Iraqi Airways, and confirms the national role played by our airport.
“With Manchester already having two runways and a catchment area of 22 million people living with two hours of the airport, we have the capacity to support airlines that have ambition to grow in the UK.”
The airline’s UK general manager, Saad Al-Khafaji, said: “We are looking forward to working with everyone at Manchester Airport to offer passengers the opportunity to fly direct to Iraq.
“With a strong Kurdish community across the region in the North and West Midlands, we are sure the routes will prove to be popular.”
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