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Lufthansa cancels night flights to Lebanon as US, others issue travel warnings

Several states have issued warnings about travel to Lebanon recently due to the escalating conflict between Israel and Hezbollah.
The logo of German airline Lufthansa can be seen on the vertical stabilizer of a plane standing with other Lufthansa aircrafts at the airport in Frankfurt am Main, western Germany, on March 7, 2024.

Lufthansa has halted night flights to Beirut according to a Monday report, becoming the latest entity to react to the security situation in Lebanon amid tensions on the border with Israel.

A spokesperson for Lufthansa Group told Reuters that night flights to and from Beirut were halted on Saturday and will continue to be suspended until the end of July due to the situation in the Middle East. The German airline’s daytime flights are operating on a normal schedule, according to the outlet.

Swiss International Air Lines, a subsidiary of Lufthansa Group, said it would move its Beirut night flights to the daytime, citing “the political developments at the border between Lebanon and Israel,” Reuters reported.

Spokespeople for Lufthansa did not immediately respond to Al-Monitor’s request for comment.

The US embassy in Lebanon said in an alert on Monday that it has been informed of adjustments to flight schedules by Lufthansa, Swiss International Air Lines and Eurowings, including short-notice flight cancellations, between Saturday and July 31. The embassy reiterated its travel advisory for the country in the alert, saying US citizens should reconsider travel due to the security situation.

Eurowings is another subsidiary of Lufthansa Group.

At a press briefing on Monday, State Department spokesperson Vedant Patel said that while Lebanon remains at a Level 3, meaning citizens should reconsider travel, southern Lebanon, the Syrian border and refugee settlements are at a Level 4, indicating citizens should not travel there.

Why it matters: Hezbollah and the Israeli military have been engaged in tit-for-tat strikes since the Iran-backed group first attacked Israel in October after the start of the Gaza war. The situation has escalated in recent weeks, leading to concerns that a major war will break out. Last month an Israeli strike killed high-ranking Hezbollah commander Taleb Sami Abdullah, while the group’s rockets caused large fires in northern Israel, among numerous other incidents.

US special envoy Amos Hochstein traveled to Beirut in June in an effort to de-escalate the situation.

Hezbollah said it targeted the Israeli military in several areas close to the border on Monday, its media outlet, Al-Manar, reported. The Israel Defense Forces said in a post on X that it struck two buildings used by “terrorists” in southern Lebanon, adding that five missiles entered Israel from Lebanon and fell in open areas.

The amended flight schedules are the latest signs of international concern over the situation in Lebanon. Last week, India, Jordan, Australia, Canada and several European countries, including Germany, issued warnings against travel to Lebanon.

Know more: Lufthansa Group temporarily suspended flights to Beirut, Amman, Erbil, Tel Aviv and Tehran in April following Iran’s attack against Israel.