Monday, March 06, 2023

i24News reports:

Palestinians from the West Bank could fly directly from Israel's Ramon Airport, near the southern city of Eilat to the Muslim Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia

Amid the recent spike in violence and hostilities between Israelis and Palestinians, and with the Muslim holy month of Ramadan and Jewish Passover festival weeks away, Israeli officials are weighing creative ways to tamp down regional tensions.

i24NEWS learned that one of the initiatives being examined by Jerusalem is enabling Palestinians from the West Bank to fly directly from the Ramon Airport, near the southern Israeli city of Eilat, to Saudi Arabia for the Muslim Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca. 

A recent meeting attended by a long list of Israeli security officials, including representatives of Israel's national Security Council, the Israeli military (IDF), transportation ministry and Israel's Airports Authority, examined the possibility of operating flights for Palestinians out of Israel's Ramon airport directly to Saudi Arabia. Such a decision would of course hinge on the approval and cooperation of the Saudi government.
I don't think the Saudis would go for this, as a direct flight from an Israeli airline landing in Mecca would be close to normalization. They might be warmer towards a one-stop flight that stops in Cyprus or Turkey.

The pilot flights for Palestinians from Ramon Airport that flew last August to Cyprus have not been repeated.  Instead, Israel has been working to improve travel to Jordan so Palestinians could save time on that trip - where Jordan was the real bottleneck. 

Whatever gets decided, one thing is certain: Palestinians will complain. 

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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 19 years and 40,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


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