Israeli Plane Makes Historic First Flight Over Saudi Skies
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AnEl Al Israel Airlines Ltd. plane flew through Saudi Arabian airspace for the first time, a sign of the improving diplomatic relations in the region.
Flight LY 971, the same digits as the United Arab Emirates’ international phone code, traveled over the kingdom to Abu Dhabi on Monday after the countries agreed earlier this month to establish ties. Following a deal brokered by the U.S., talks focusing on economic issues are due tostart this week.
One of the pilots confirmed over the intercom before takeoff that the flight is passing over Saudi Arabia, shortening the journey by about four hours.
The opening of Saudi skies is crucial politically and for Israeli airlines, given its large land mass blocking Jerusalem and Tel Aviv from several key destinations to the East. The flight comes after El Al was grounded because of the coronavirus pandemic, with the airline needing to arrange a financing plan to resume full operations.
JUST IN: The first Israeli commercial flight to fly over Saudi airspace has just taken off.
El Al LY971 is flying to Abu Dhabi. More @business: https://trib.al/qeeXf8Y
10:29 AM · Aug 31, 2020
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