Wednesday, February 07, 2018

Gold: Air India Decision is 'small step toward normalized interaction'

Saudi Arabia’s apparent decision to allow Air India to fly over its territory on the way to and from Israel, marking a historic first, is a “very important development,” says Dore Gold, a former Foreign Ministry director-general who in the past has had informal contact with the Saudis.

Gold’s comment came amid numerous media reports that the Saudis are changing their policy of some 70 years and allowing overflights of planes going to and from Israel.
Various Israeli agencies, asked about the issue on Wednesday, referred questions to the Prime Minister’s Office, which would neither confirm nor deny the reports.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu brought up the issue during his visit to India last month. India’s Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj is on a three-day visit to Saudi Arabia.

Reuters, meanwhile, quoted a spokesman for Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation as saying the agency had not granted any permission to Air India.
07/02/18 Herb Keinon/Jerusalem Post