Israel lists first commercial passenger flight to UAE

El Al planes parked at Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv, Israel, April 21, 2013. (AP Photo)
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Israel has listed an El Al flight taking off Monday for Abu Dhabi, which would be Israel’s first commercial passenger flight to the United Arab Emirates after the two countries agreed to a US-brokered deal to normalize relations.

The confirmation of the flight comes as the latest concrete sign of a deal that saw Israel agree to halt plans to annex land sought by the Palestinians.
The website of the Israel Airports Authority listed the flight on Friday.

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It said the flight would be numbered LY971, a nod to the UAE’s international calling code number. A return flight to Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion International Airport on Tuesday will be numbered LY972, Israel’s international calling code.

The flight was not immediately bookable on the website of El Al, Israel’s flag carrier. US officials earlier said the anticipated first flight will include American officials led by President Donald Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner. Other US officials on board will include national security adviser Robert O’Brien, Mideast envoy Avi Berkowitz and envoy for Iran Brian Hook.

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Israel and the UAE agreed to normalize relations Aug. 13. By Aug. 16, telephone calls began ringing between the nations, marking the first concrete step of the US-brokered diplomatic accord.

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