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Report: El Al Extends Ban on Passenger Flights Until End of September

(JNS) El Al airlines has announced that it is extending the ban on passenger flights due to the coronavirus outbreak until Sept. 30.

The company is extending the unpaid leave of most of the airline’s 6,080 employees, Israeli business daily Globes reported.

The airline said that the reason for the extension was because of “continued restrictions regarding mandatory isolation for travelers entering Israel (except from a very small number of countries) and the ban on foreign tourists from entering Israel,” according to the report.

“There is still a significant way to go until the restart of scheduled flights. In order to see people resuming flying we need both countries of origin of a journey and destinations to remove isolation requirements, shorter checking procedures, and no less important high public confidence in flights,” said El Al CEO Gonen Usishkin.

El Al is continuing to operate a limited number of cargo flights.

Israeli Health Ministry Associate Director-General Itamar Grotto has said that Israel is planning to allow the entry of tourists into the country as of next month.

Israel partially reopened its skies earlier this week, following months of closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to a plan unveiled by the Israeli government last week, those entering from “green countries” will no longer be required to quarantine upon arrival.

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