UAE airlines Flydubai and Emirates have cancelled flights to and from Baghdad as violent clashes in the Iraqi capital escalated.

Several people have been killed and wounded in the city's fortified green zone following clashes that erupted between rival groups that include militias aligned with Iran after Shia Muslim cleric Moqtada al-Sadr said he would leave politics.

Flydubai said on Tuesday that it has cancelled flights to/from Bahgdad on August 30 and 31.

"We will continue to monitor the situation closely," a spokesperson told Zawya.

Travellers who have booked tickets for travel to Baghdad are advised to call the airline's contact centre, the flydubai travel shops or their local travel partners for rebooking or refund.

Long-haul operator Emirates Airline also confirmed the cancellation of flights to/from Baghdad on August 30 and 31, and flights to/from Basra on August 31.

The airline said flyers connecting to Baghdad or Basra will not be accepted for travel at their point of origin.

"Emirates is monitoring the situation closely," the airline said.

Travellers who have purchased tickets are also advised to contact their travel agents or the airline's local office for rebooking options or visit the company's website to request a refund.

(Reporting by Cleofe Maceda; editing by Seban Scaria)