Turkey imposes restrictions on Israeli cargo planes
Turkey has imposed restrictions on the use of its airspace by Israeli cargo planes, an Israeli news report has said, Today's Zaman reported.
The report, which appeared in the Israeli daily Haaretz, says Turkey has introduced restrictions on Israeli cargo planes carrying "dangerous materials." El Al Israeli Airlines and CAL Cargo Air Lines flights will be affected and most cargo flights in and out of Israel will be subject to new restrictions as any flight carrying batteries and even perfume, which are flammable and require special storage procedures, are categorized as "dangerous materials," according to Haaretz.
From now on, Turkey is requiring that it be notified about flights of this type at least 10 days in advance, so that it may review whether or not to approve them. The new move will cause substantial financial difficulty for Israeli airlines, as most Israeli flights, and all those flying to the Far East, regularly use Turkish airspace and are now being forced to use longer routes that circumvent Turkey, the report said. It added that El Al and CAL have already contacted the Civil Aviation Administration of Israel, asking authorities to respond to the Turkish move with similar restrictions on Turkish flights. There was no immediate statement from the Turkish authorities. Turkey has downgraded its diplomatic relations and suspended military ties with Israel amid crisis over the Israeli killing of eight Turks and one Turkish-American on an aid ship that was trying to breach the Israeli blockade of Gaza in May 2010. Ankara says ties will not return to normal unless Israel formally apologizes for the killings, compensates the families and lifts the blockade on Gaza.