News

Airlines halt flights to Israel

Airlines halt flights to Israel

GROUNDED:The flight stoppages came after Hamas, the militant group that dominates in the Gaza Strip, and its allies fired more rockets into Israel, triggering sirens in Tel Aviv. One hit a town on the fringes of Ben-Gurion International Airport, lightly injuring two people, officials said. Photo: Reuters

(Reuters) – U.S. air carriers Delta Air Lines, American Airlines Group and United Airlines said on Tuesday they have halted flights to Israel to ensure passenger safety as the turmoil in the region has intensified.

Delta and United said in separate statements that they have suspended flights to and from Tel Aviv “until further notice.”

Atlanta-based Delta said it was operating in coordination with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration “to ensure the safety of our customers and employees.”

The flight stoppages came after Hamas, the militant group that dominates in the Gaza Strip, and its allies fired more rockets into Israel, triggering sirens in Tel Aviv. One hit a town on the fringes of Ben-Gurion International Airport, lightly injuring two people, officials said.

Meanwhile, Casey Norton, a spokesman for American Airlines, said an inbound and outbound flight operated by its US Airways unit between Philadelphia and Tel Aviv were canceled.

Esther Castiel, who heads US Airways’ operations in Tel Aviv, said the FAA had “issued a request not to travel to Israel. All U.S. carriers are stopping.”

She added that it was not clear whether the travel halt was for one day or more.

The FAA did not immediately have a comment on the matter.

A spokesman for Lufthansa said it was closely monitoring the situation, but that the German carrier has not yet decided to halt flights to Israel. British Airways, which flies to Tel Aviv twice daily, said its flights continue to operate as normal.

Israel launched an offensive on July 8 to halt missile salvoes out of Gaza by Hamas, which was angered by a crackdown on its supporters in the occupied West Bank and suffering economic hardship because of an Israeli-Egyptian blockade.

(Reporting by Karen Jacobs in Atlanta, Steven Scheer in Tel Aviv and Victoria Bryan in Berlin, editing by G Crosse)

Recent Headlines

in Entertainment

Easy April Fools’ Day pranks

aprilfools

Looking for a quick and easy way to pull a fast one? Check out these perfect pranks for kids, coworkers, and friends.

in Music

Gene Simmons gets into movie business

genesimmons

The KISS rocker and WWE Studios will join together to try to scare the bejeezus out of you.

in Music

Willie Nelson announces lineup for July 4 picnic

willienelson

The legendary musician is bringing his picnic back to Austin, Texas.

in Entertainment

Robin Williams’ image cannot be used for 25 years

Actor and comedian Robin Williams poses during a press tour promoting his new movie "License To Wed" in Santa Monica, Calif., Friday, June 15, 2007.

The "Mrs. Doubtfire" star will not appear in any form of publicity until 2039.

in Music

Music festivals ban ‘selfie sticks’

selfie

You'll just have to have long arms if you're taking a selfie at Coachella or Lollapalooza.