(eTN) – Following the outbreak of hostilities earlier this year, initiated by Khartoum’s rogue regime attempting to reverse the independence decision of its former Southern population by means of naked aggression, flights between the two capitals of Juba and Khartoum were halted by the Northern civil aviation administration, placing considerable hardship on travelers and compelling them to incur added costs by flying via Nairobi or Addis Ababa with Kenya Airways and Ethiopian Airlines. Kenya Airways operates two daily flights between Nairobi and Juba and a once daily frequency between Nairobi and Khartoum, while Ethiopian flies daily between Addis Ababa and Juba and also daily between Addis and Khartoum.
This “detouring” has now changed again when yesterday the first nonstop flights were permitted to take off after a nearly 6-month break.
Marsland Aviation was the first airline to resume operations as news spread in Juba and Khartoum that flights were now available again, and it is expected that Sudan Airways will shortly announce the resumption of flights, too, with other carriers awaiting civil aviation approvals to also return to the route.
It is thought that between half a million and a million Southern Sudanese still live in Khartoum and other parts of the northern state, many of whom have in the past regularly traveled on business to Juba by air, a significant number of potential travelers for airlines to take advantage of.
Cargo flights between the two capitals have reportedly also been cleared to resume, as has land transport following talks between the two antagonists in Addis Ababa aimed to restore peaceful political relations and resumption of full trade links including export of South Sudan’s oil via the main pipeline to the Northern Red Sea port of Port Sudan.