File Photo: EgyptAir planes are seen parked at the airport in Cairo, Egypt October 9, 2019. (Photo: Reuters)
Egypt's flagship airliner EgyptAir said it is suspending flights to and from China as of February over the outbreak of coronavirus in the East Asian country, the company said in a statement on Thursday.
According to the statement, EgyptAir is suspending flights to the Chinese city of Hangzhou effective 1 February, and Beijing and Guangzhou starting 4 February until further notice.
EgyptAir said it is taking the measure to preserve the safety and health of travelers and flight crews.
The company added that it is committed to returning Chinese tourist groups currently visiting Egypt, and that the last group is set to leave the country on 4 February.
EgyptAir operates a daily flight to Guangzhou, and three weekly flights to Beijing and Hangzhou.
The statement added that the civil aviation ministry and EgyptAir are following developments on the matter to determine when flights will be resumed.
In a following statement on Thursday, EgyptAir said it will resume flights in the upcoming period to Chinese cities in accordance with the incoming reservations and demand.
EgyptAir is joining a list of global airliners in the suspension or scaling back of flights to and from China, including British Airways, United Airlines, American Airlines, Air Asia, Cathay Pacific, Air India, IndiGo, Lufthansa and Finnair.
The epidemic has killed at least 170 people in China, with thousands infected worldwide. China has started quarantining hundreds of citizens evacuated from the Chinese city of Wuhan, the epicentre of the disease.