Israel opens 2nd international airport in response to flight cancellations

After the FAA shut down flights to Israel yesterday, the Israeli government has responded by opening another international airport to alleviate fears and allow for international air travel back into Israel:

JERUSALEM POST – Transportation Minister Israel Katz on Wednesday instructed the relevant agencies to immediately open the Uvda airport, the country’s second terminus for air traffic which lies just north of Eilat, in the wake of the spate of flight cancellations announced by major foreign airlines.

Katz convened a meeting of senior civilian aviation officials who recommended that the Uvda airport be utilized to replace Ben-Gurion Airport.

Speaking to reporters at Ben-Gurion Airport, Katz said that Uvda would begin operating at noon local time. The minister said that efforts are also being made to provide service to some 4,000 Israelis who were left stranded in Istanbul after their airlines refused to fly into Lod in light of the FAA ban announced on Tuesday.

Katz said that his ministry had urged Turkish aviation officials to transport the Israelis back home, but that the Turks are hesitant to land their aircraft in Uvda.

If yesterday’s FAA shut down was just a stunt by the Obama administration to put pressure on Israel, then this won’t matter and they will find another reason to shut down flights. If not today, soon. Yesterday was likely just a ‘warning’.

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