The first-ever commercial flight from Israel to the United Arab Emirates took off Monday morning, with high US and Israeli delegations aboard the vessel because it flies by way of Saudi Arabian airspace.
Israeli airline El Al Flight LY971, the identical digits because the UAE’s phone space code, departed at 11:21 a.m. from an nearly empty Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv en path to Abu Dhabi.
Israeli officers had been in a position to shorten the journey by about 4 hours after Riyadh officers accepted their request Sunday to fly over Saudi territory, one other main first.
“For the very first time, an Israeli-registered plane will overfly Saudi Arabia and after a continuous flight from Israel, land within the UAE. We’re all excited and stay up for extra historic flights that can take us to different capital cities within the area, advancing us all to a extra affluent future,” pilot Tal Becker mentioned earlier than takeoff.
The flight comes simply two weeks after the Trump administration introduced a historic peace settlement between Israel and the UAE, which might pave the best way for full normalizations.
White Home senior adviser Jared Kushner, who’s married to first daughter Ivanka Trump, helped orchestrate the deal and was on the flight alongside nationwide safety adviser Robert O’Brien.
The 2 had been joined by different members of the US and Israeli delegations.
Simply earlier than boarding the Boeing 737-900, Kushner remarked, “We’re about to board a historic flight, the first commercial flight in historical past between Israel to a Gulf Arab nation.
“Whereas it is a historic flight, we hope that it will begin an much more historic journey for the Center East and past.”
The first son-in-law, who was beforehand concerned in creating an Israel-Palestinian peace plan for the Trump administration, famous that he prayed on the Western Wall on Sunday that Muslims noticed this occasion world wide.
“I prayed yesterday on the [Western] Wall that Muslims and Arabs from all through the world might be watching this flight, recognizing that we’re all youngsters of God and that the long run doesn’t should [be] predetermined by the previous,” Kushner mentioned.
“It is a very hopeful time and I imagine that a lot peace and prosperity is feasible on this area and all through the world.”
As soon as in Abu Dhabi, the delegations will conduct “working conferences … on a spread of points forward of the signing of cooperation agreements within the civil and financial spheres,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu mentioned in an announcement.