Sandstorms paralyse life in Saudi and Kuwait, force closure of Iraqi airports

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Gulf Today Report

A massive sandstorm blanketed the Rafha governorate in Saudi Arabia on Monday morning.

Weather experts said that the storm is expected to reach the governorates of Riyadh, the North, and the Eastern Province in the coming hours.

The dust storm formed in the Iraqi desert, and entered the State of Kuwait and northern Saudi Arabia.

The storm will affect the governorates of the central region and the eastern region, and will reduce visibility.

The National Center of Meteorology had issued, through the early warning system, several alerts about the expected weather conditions during the coming hours in the Eastern Province, Qassim, Riyadh, Makkah, Madinah, North, Hail, Najran, Al-Jawf and Tabuk.

On Monday morning, Iraq witnessed severe dust storms, which paralyzed life and led to the closure of Baghdad International Airport and the disruption of studies, after the visibility reached 400 meters.

And the Iraqi government announced the suspension of working hours in all official institutions in the country, with the exception of the health, security and service departments, due to bad weather conditions and a heavy wave of dust.

For his part, the Minister of Education, Ali Al-Dulaimi, announced that it was decided to postpone the exams for sixth graders and unfinished classes on Monday, to the next day and on the same announced schedule, due to bad weather, according to local media.

He added that the measure came due to “weather forecasts of a dust storm, and in the interest of the safety of our students and students.”

The Baghdad Airport Administration also issued a statement, saying: “The Baghdad International Airport administration would like to clarify to all our valued passengers and airlines operating at the airport, the closure of the airspace and the suspension of air traffic at the airport for this Monday, due to dust storms.”

And she explained that “the visibility is up to 400 metres,” noting that “passengers will be informed of the nature of any emergency developments due to the weather conditions affecting the country.”

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