Qatar Airways is to launch new routes to Prague and Sohar next month, with the carrier’s CEO stating the airline is accelerating global expansion plans.

A three times weekly service to Sohar in Oman will launch on August 8, followed by a daily route to Prague on August 21.

Both services will be operated by Airbus A320 aircraft, configured for 12 business class seats and 132 in economy.

The Gulf airline says it is expediting the launch of the new routes “to support its ongoing growth and investment strategy”, with group CEO Akbar Al Baker saying that “Qatar Airways is committed to connecting more people to more places, through our five-star hub, Hamad International Airport, while supporting our global message of ‘Going Places Together’”.

The move comes despite the ongoing blockade of Qatar by four neighbouring countries, with Qatar Airways recently stating that operations are “running smoothly” and Al Baker declaring “business and usual”.

The carrier launched flights to Dublin in June, with services to Nice and Skopje set to follow this month, and other new routes planned for 2017 and 2018 including Las Vegas, Canberra and Rio de Janeiro.