The Israel Airports Authority (IAA) has announced that special flights will be launched during the summer for Palestinians living in Judea, Samaria and the Palestinian Authority. The flights will be operated by the small Turkish airline Atlas between Ramon and Anatolia in Turkey. The flights will begin later this month and continue through September and October with Istanbul added as a destination.
The option for Palestinians to fly from Ramon is a major breakthrough. Until now, Palestinians wanting to fly abroad have needed to cross via the Allenby Bridge to Jordan and then travel to Amman airport. Now they can travel from Israel although it is not yet clear how they will travel to and from Ramon airport.
The IDF Coordinator of Operations in the Territories General Rassan Aliyan, who promoted the option at the request of the Palestinians, will be responsible for arrangements. The decision to do this was taken during the visit of US President Joe Biden to Israel, as one of the gestures to the Palestinians.
According to the IAA, there will be two flights a week from Ramon to Anatolia from late August and also to Istanbul from September.
Starting October, there will also be flights by other international flights from Ramon for Israelis with Turkish carrier Pegasus operating four weekly flights to Istanbul and Polish carrier Enter operating flights to Warsaw and Katowice. Arkia is already operating flights from Ramon to Larnaca in Cyprus and Batumi in Georgia. The IAA is trying to promote greater passenger traffic through Ramon airport, which is mainly used for domestic flights. Passengers are being tempted by less crowded conditions than Ben Gurion airport and free long-term parking.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on August 9 2022.
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