The airline said in a statement on its Facebook page that it was suspending flights to the Belarusian capital for one week starting with August 5.

On Wednesday, Martin Huth, the EU ambassador to Iraq, told BNS that Iraqi Airways flights to Minsk would likely be cancelled for ten days.

The European Union has been involved in negotiations with Baghdad in a bid to convince Iraq to help to return Iraqi citizens who have crossed into Lithuania from Belarus illegally to their country of origin and cut the number of flights to Minsk to stem the migration flow.

According to the websites of Minsk Airport and Iraqi Airways, the Iraqi airline had plans to start operating flights to Minsk not only from Baghdad, but also from Basra, Erbil and Sulaymaniyah in the near future.

Over 4,000 irregular migrants – mostly Iraqi citizens – have walked into Lithuania from Belarus illegally so far this year.

Lithuania has declared a state-level extreme situation over the migration influx which it says is being orchestrated by the Belarusian regime.