Israeli aircraft lands in Turkey for first time since 2007

An Israeli plane has landed in Turkey for the first time for over a decade, Israel’s leading airline El Al said on Sunday.

El Al was the only Israeli airline to conduct flights to Turkey until it canceled the route to Istanbul in 2007 due to high security costs and stiff restrictions arising from the tense relations between the two countries.

Since then, except for emergency landings and private flights, no Israeli aircraft has landed in Turkey.

On Sunday, however, El Al’s Dreamliner aircraft, converted to carry cargo, landed in Istanbul.

It was loaded there with 24 tons of humanitarian coronavirus equipment, destined for Israel and the United States.

So far, El Al has received approval from the Turkish authorities to operate two flights for humanitarian purposes and is awaiting approval to operate cargo flights regularly.