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Netanyahu Confirms Air India Flight To Israel Will Use Saudi Airspace

In the latest development suggesting a thaw in relations between the Jewish state and the leader of the Sunni Muslim world, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu confirmed that Saudi Arabia granted permission to Air India to use its airspace for a flight between New Delhi and Tel Aviv scheduled to commence in the coming weeks. The route over Saudi Arabia will greatly reduce operating costs (savings that should, in turn, be transferred to the customer), as the trip between Israel and India will be cut down from eight hours to about five and a half. The Saudis did not, however, grant overfly permission to El Al, Israel’s national carrier, which operates four weekly flights to Mumbai. Netanyahu revealed that he is in talks with El Al to ensure the company does not get hurt economically, although no further details were provided. While Israel and Saudi Arabia do not have formal diplomatic relations, over the past few years there has been an apparent rapprochement between the two countries based primarily on the shared desire to curb Shiite Iran’s regional expansionism and potential nuclearization.

Did you know we’re celebrating our 20th Anniversary as the 1st American News Agency exclusively covering the Middle East?

  • The Middle East landscape is changing rapidly.
  • The roads in the region open to new possibilities.
  • The Media Line continues to pave the way to a far greater understanding of the region’s land, people, policies and governments through our trusted, fact-based news.

We’re an independent, ad-free, non-profit news agency and rely on friends like you!

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