Ethiopian Airlines suspends all flights to China in reaction to coronavirus outbreak

(Reuters) – Ethiopian Airlines on Thursday has suspended all flights to China, where an outbreak of coronavirus has killed at least 170 people, according to the airline’s passenger call center.

(CGTN) – Ethiopian Airlines flights will continue to operate to China, the airline said in a statement Thursday evening.

Ethiopian Airlines flights to Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chengu, and Hong Kong will continue as normal, the airline said. The airline added that flights will only be affected by “the usual supply and demand adjustment that we always make during the Chinese New Year Holidays.

The announcement comes following after other airlines reportedly cut flights to China following a fall in demand.

“China is one of the strongest and one of the oldest markets for Ethiopian Airlines. We have been connecting the great Chinese nation with the entire continent of Africa for almost half a century and it is outgrowth strategic market,” the airline said.

Ethiopian Airlines added that they are working with the relevant Chinese and Ethiopian Authorities to protect and crew from the coronavirus.

Earlier today, the Ethiopian government said that there are no confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the country, according to the state-affiliated FANA Broadcasting.

This comes after Ethiopia’s Ministry of Health on Tuesday said four Ethiopians who were suspected of being infected by coronavirus were placed in isolation following their arrival at Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa from Wuhan in China.