The Iraqi Cabinet dissolved state-owned airline Iraqi Airways due to a conflict with Kuwait, which has dragged on since 1990, said the Ministery of Transportation on Wednesday.
During the invasion in Kuwait in 1990 by Saddam Hussein, 10 planes and a small treasure of spare parts were stolen from state-owned Kuwait Airways. Kuwait is now pursuing restoration payments worth $1.2 billion, which were awarded by British courts. Kuwait recently tried to freeze the companies assets worldwide.
According to AP, Kuwait attempted to confiscate a plane flying for Iraqi Airways yet did not succeed, as the plane was owned by a Swedish airline. “The Iraqi cabinet decided to close down Iraqi Airways and declared bankruptcy, because the company doesn't own any planes and because the Kuwaiti government filed lawsuits against the company.” said Karim al-Tamini, spokesmen for the Ministry of Transport during its weekly meeting, AP reports.
The company chartered planes from other airlines, and the ministry hopes to resume activities in the future with new companies. The dissolution has been called a legal move by Iraq to avoid paying its debts.