Emirates has confirmed that it will be operating a special repatriation flight on October 19, 2023, to help Australian citizens in Israel and Gaza to return home.
Flight EK2616 is scheduled to depart Dubai International Airport (DXB) at 09:40 local time and arrive at Sydney International Airport (SYD) the following day at 06:05 local time.
In an emailed statement to AeroTime, Emirates said that over the past days aircraft and crew have been made available and placed on standby, pending confirmation of passenger numbers and other details from the Australian government.
“Emirates stands ready to help impacted Australians return home, through our regularly scheduled services between Dubai and Australia, as well as the deployment of additional humanitarian flights as needed,” the airline spokesperson said.
The airline also said it has been in “detailed discussions” with the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), other Australian government contacts, and Australian flag carrier Qantas, to coordinate logistics and ground operations.
“The situation remains dynamic, and we continue to work closely with our partners on efforts to evacuate and repatriate Australians. Emirates remains committed to supporting Australia, a community that we have been proud to serve and be a part of, for over 27 years,” the airline said.
According to DFAT, there are 1,500 registered Australians in Israel and in the Gaza region.
The first repatriation flight to Australia arrived on October 17, 2023 via a chartered Qatar Airways flight. Another “mercy” flight via Qantas from London-Heathrow Airport (LHR) is scheduled to arrive in Sydney on October 18, 2023.