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Nepal, Japan agree to resume commercial flights

Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono, left and Nepalese Minister for Foreign Affairs Pradeep Gyawali sit during a bilateral meeting in Kathmandu, Nepal, Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2019. (AP Photo/Niranjan Shrestha)

KATHMANDU, Nepal (AP) — Japan and Nepal agreed Wednesday to allow state-run Nepal Airlines to resume flights between the two Asian nations.

The agreement was signed Wednesday at the beginning of a two-day visit to Nepal by Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono.

No Japanese airlines fly to Nepal, and Japanese tourists who visit Nepal and Nepalese students and workers who travel to Japan have been forced to take indirect flights.

Nepal Airlines discontinued its flights to Japan several years ago because it did not have enough planes and officials were involved in financial irregularities.

“I hope the Nepal Airlines direct flights to Japan will begin at the earliest, for which we will extend all our cooperation to the Nepal government,” Kono said.

Kono is to meet with Nepal President Bidhya Devi Bhandari and Prime Minister Khadga Prasad Oli before flying home on Thursday.

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