Tunisia suspended all Emirates Airlines flights in and out of the country after after the airline prevented several Tunisian women from boarding its flights.
Tunisia’s transport ministry announced the ban on Sunday, stating the measure would remain in effect until the situation is resolved.
“The Ministry of transport has decided to suspend trips flights from and to Tunisia until the company has been able to find a suitable solution for the operation of its flights in accordance with international laws and treaties,” the ministry said.
One of the women said an Emirates Airlines staff member told her Tunisian women under the age of 30, with a Tunisian passport aren’t permitted on the Emirates flight.
Another woman said her husband and son were permitted to travel, but she was forced to stay behind.
Salem Zeabi,the United Arab Emirates ambassador to Tunisa, said the measure preventing the Tunisian women from boarding the flights was “temporary and relating to security arrangements” when he was called in to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday.
Anwar Gargash, the UAE’s minister of state for foreign affairs, also said the restriction was related to security.
“We have contacted our Tunisian brothers about security information that necessitated taking specific and circumstantial measures,” he wrote on Twitter.
Gargash added the UAE “appreciates and respects Tunisian women” and “we should avoid attempts at interpretation and errors.”
By Daniel Uria