Israel Seeks Saudi Flights Deal for Hajj Pilgrims

(Bloomberg-Arabian Business) Israel is trying to persuade Saudi Arabia to permit special Hajj pilgrimage flights to Mecca for its Muslim citizens, who now must endure a 1,000-mile bus route across the Jordan River and through the Saudi desert to reach Islam's most sacred shrine. Israel's Communications Minister Ayoob Kara wants them to fly directly from Tel Aviv's Ben-Gurion International Airport. "Reality has changed," Kara said. "This is a good time to make the request, and I'm working hard on it." About 6,000 Israeli Arabs make the Hajj journey every year, though only a few hundred are allowed to fly to Saudi Arabia from Jordan, Kara said.

2017-08-29 00:00:00

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