Abu Dhabi-based airline removes Israel from its flight map

(JTA) — An airline owned by the United Arab Emirates that is a partner of American Airlines has removed Israel from its flight map and refuses to transport Israelis.

Etihad Airways’ travel-route map shows all countries in the Middle East with the exception of Israel and its major cities, the New York Post reported Monday. The airline also refuses to allow Israeli passengers, who are not permitted into the UAE, to fly with the airline. The two countries do not have diplomatic relations.

The airline, the only one providing direct service between the United States and Abu Dhabi, receives $425,000 annually from the Department of Homeland Security, the New York Post reported on Monday. The money pays for a facility that allows Abu Dhabi citizens traveling to the United States to clear customs more quickly.

The airline also has obtained six loan guarantees worth some $1.3 billion since 2009 from the Export-Import Bank, a U.S. federal agency, the Washington Free Beacon reported.

A low-cost British airline, BMI, was found in 2009 to be using an in-flight map that did not include Israel for its flights destined for Arab countries.

 

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