WASHINGTON (Jun. 28)
Israel and the United States opened discussions this week on the reported mutual desire of both countries to expand their civil aviation programs. While the Israelis delegation did not name cities in the U.S. where it wishes El Al, the Israeli airline, to have landing rights, American sources said the Israelis would like to begin with Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston and Miami and later include such cities as Philadelphia. At present, El Al flies only to New York.
Similar negotiations, American sources said, failed five years ago because Israel did not wish additional competing airlines flying into Israel and the U.S. Administration opposed expansion of El Al service in America. Now the U.S. is looking toward a more competitive field for foreign airlines in exchange for opportunities abroad. Israel also is seeking to develop its tourist industry. The 10-member Israeli delegation is headed by Deputy Chief of Mission Hanan Bar-On and Naftali Ben Yehuda, head of Israel’s Civil Aviation Administration. Michael H. Styles, director of the State Department’s Office of Aviation, heads the American team which includes the Department of Transportation, the Civil Aeronautics Board, the National Air Carriers Association and the Air Transport Association. (By Joseph Polakoff)