Maldives immigration 'ready' for SriLankan flights to south

Maldives immigration Monday said it was making preparations to welcome the first SriLankan airlines flight to the southernmost Atoll from Colombo after initially denying any knowledge of the scheduled flights to Gan International Airport from December 1.

Immigration had earlier said the media reports of scheduled SriLankan Airlines flight to Gan were completely false which have been backed by civil aviation authorities and the airport operator. Immigration had also the necessary permit for the airline to commence operations to Gan had not been issued.

However, in a fresh statement on Monday, immigration assured that the passengers arriving to Gan from Colombo would be offered immigration services.

SriLankan airlines had unveiled an office in Maldives' southern most Atoll Addu as the airline prepared to operate flights between Gan island and Colombo from next month.

Government last week had announced the date to open Gan-Addu International Airport after completing a major project to expand the runway of the airport in the southern most Atoll of the archipelago.

Addu International Airport Company's general manager Ibthishama Ahmed Saeed had said the airport would be open for operations on November 15, which has seen 960 meters of land reclaimed to accommodate the expanded runway.