On thursday, the direct maiden flight of Air India has arrived creating a new chapter in India-Israel ties and now ending the ban by Saudi Arabia. Flight AI 139 landed at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion airport at 2215 (Israeli time).
Israeli Tourism Minister Yariv Levin told PTI that “This is really a historical moment…We are in a new era. I am sure that we will see many more Indian tourists coming to Israel…and Israelis would also come to India in much higher numbers.
He added that this link between the two nations would further increase the bond and strengthen the relationship.
Saudi Arabia has enabled the Air India to take the shorter route to use its airspace. It covers the distance of 7.15 hours, 2.10 hours. Since alot of Arab and Islamic nations do not recognise Israel, they don’t allow airlines to use their airspace.
“We have to very cautious. This is really a first step — a very important one… I hope with times we have more and more normal relation with our neighbour in this region….India played a very important bridge not only between India and us but also between Israel and other countries in this region.” said Levin.