Saudi-Qatar borders reopen: First Qatari vehicles enter after over 3 years

Web Report/Dubai
Filed on January 9, 2021
(AFP file photo)

A Covid-19 health centre has been set up at Saudi's Salwa border crossing with Qatar.

Qatari vehicles crossed into Saudi Arabia through a land border on Saturday for the first time in over three years.

Saudi Arabia reopened its airspace and land and sea borders with Qatar on Monday, heralding a breakthrough agreement aimed at ending the three-year diplomatic dispute with Doha.

According to Al Arabiya TV, a Covid-19 health centre was set up at the Salwa border crossing with Qatar on Friday.

“It’s good the crisis has been resolved, and the warm welcome we had, and the happiness we see in our brothers,” the driver of the second car to pass through the Abu Samra-Salwa crossing told Ekhbariya TV.

ALSO READ: UAE-Qatar ties: All land, sea and air ports reopen today

UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Dr Anwar Gargash said earlier this week that travel and trade links could resume within a week of the deal.

So far, no flights have resumed between Qatar and the four Arab states. Qatar Airways on Thursday began re-routing some of its flights through Saudi airspace.

Etihad airways, Abu Dhabi’s carrier, intends to recommence services between Abu Dhabi and Doha, a spokesperson said on Saturday.

Measures to contain the spread of the new coronavirus are in place on both sides of the Saudi-Qatar land border.

All arrivals into Qatar crossing at Abu Samra must present a negative Covid-19 test, take a new test at the border and quarantine for one week in one of a number of selected hotels, Qatar News Agency said.

(With inputs from Reuters)

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