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North Korean Air Koryo announces resumption of China flights

North Korean Air Koryo announces resumption of China flights
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Written by Harry Johnson

No flight took off from Pyongyang for Beijing despite announcement

  • North Korea has closed all ports of entry by land, sea or air in January 2020
  • North Korea is showing “increasing signs” of easing its border restrictions with China
  • Earlier, Air Koryo released its flight schedule to the Russian port city of Vladivostok

North Korea’s Air Koryo appears to be set to resume operating two flights between Pyongyang and Beijing this week, the airline’s website showed today. It is still not entirely clear whether and when exactly the service will resume after more than a year of suspension amid COVID-19 pandemic cross-border restrictions.

The flight schedule posted on North Korean national flag carrier’s website, the airline’s JS251 flight will depart from Pyongyang at 4:00 p.m. and arrive in Beijing at 5:50 p.m. on Thursday. Another flight is scheduled to depart from Beijing for Pyongyang on Friday.

As of 4:30 p.m., however, no flight took off from Pyongyang, according to a real-time flight tracker. Some speculated that the airline could have tested its website in preparation to resume flights to China.

Earlier today, a unification ministry official told reporters that the North Korea is showing “increasing signs” of easing its border restrictions with China.

North Korea has closed all ports of entry by land, sea or air in January 2020 in an efforts to block the coronavirus from spreading into the country.

Earlier, Air Koryo released its flight schedule to the Russian port city of Vladivostok, but did not operate the flights there either.

North Korea has not reported any case of COVID-19 virus infection, but it has called for nationwide efforts to prevent the virus from breaking out on its soil through intensified border controls and tightened quarantine processes.