Turkey, Israel hold talks for more flights
ISTANBULTurkey and Israel have begun discussions to increase the number of scheduled and chartered passenger flights by Israeli airlines to Turkey following a thaw in their relations, Israeli Haaretz daily has reported.
The goal is to resume scheduled flights by El Al Airlines, Israel’s national airline, to Istanbul and charter flights by Arkia and Israir airlines to Antalya and other resort destinations in Turkey, according to the paper, which added that representatives from the Shin Bet domestic security service and the transportation and foreign ministries were involved in the talks.
The negotiations accelerated after Shin Bet approved the resumption of cargo flights to Istanbul. El Al halted its flights to Turkey in March after some Turkish authorities refused to comply with Israel’s security demands, the paper reported. In June 2010, just one month after the Mavi Marmara incident that soured bilateral relations, El Al announced that it would not implement a code-sharing agreement on the Tel Aviv-Istanbul route it signed with Turkey’s AtlasJet airline.