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BA suspends operations to Pakistan, IMF team leaves country

British Airways has halted all its flights to Pakistan and an IMF team has left the country without completing an economic review due to security concerns in the wake of Saturday's suicide attack on the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad.

world Updated: Sep 22, 2008 18:52 IST

British Airways has halted all its flights to Pakistan and an IMF team has left the country without completing an economic review due to security concerns in the wake of Saturday's suicide attack on the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad.

British Airways spokesman Sohail Rahman said the airline had temporarily suspended its operations in Pakistan following the bombing.

The situation is being reviewed by British Airway's head office in London and the airline is not in a position to give a date for the resumption of services, he said.

The airline's last flight from London to Islamabad, the only destination in Pakistan served by British Airways, operated on Sunday.

Finance ministry officials were quoted by Dawn News channel as saying that an International Monetary Fund delegation had left Pakistan without completing an economic review of the country due to security concerns.

The team was scheduled to complete its review on Wednesday but left after the suicide attack that killed 53 people, including four foreigners, and injured 266.

The IMF is currently working with the Pakistan government to address the country's worsening economic crisis. The team's departure would delay the finalisation of the IMF's statement on the state of the Pakistani economy, they said.

Meanwhile, the International School of Islamabad, also known as the American school, today closed down till Friday after it received a "specific threat", sources told PTI.

The school's branches in Lahore and Karachi were also closed.