12° Nicosia,
14 July, 2024

Lebanon bans top Cypriot airline from flying over Israeli territories

The move comes after it was established that an Israeli corporation owns nearly half of the shares in the company

Source: Press TV

Lebanon has barred the largest airline in Cyprus, TUS Airways, from flying in the Arab country’s airspace or landing at Beirut–Rafic Hariri International Airport, due to the fact that an Israeli corporation owns nearly half of the shares in the company.

In a statement published by the state-run National News Agency on Saturday, the Director General of the Lebanese Civil Aviation Authority, Fadi al-Hassan, said the Israeli company Knafaim Holdings Ltd. owns 49.9% of the stock of the Cypriot airline.

Hassan added that he had already received a letter from the Cypriot Civil Aviation Authority announcing the appointment of TUS Airways as the carrier in air transport services between Cyprus and Lebanon based on a bilateral agreement signed in 2017.

The Lebanese official noted that the ban on the Cypriot airline will remain in effect until further notice and that the decision to close Lebanese airspace to the Cypriot airline was taken within the Boycott of Israel Law framework.

The Lebanese Civil Aviation Authority referred the matter to the General Directorate of Economy and Commerce to verify the status of the company, especially as the directorate had requested not to deal with companies of a similar status, the latest of which were the two Ukrainian companies Aerosvit Ukrainian Airlines and the Ukrainian International Airlines (UIA).

In 1951, the Arab League called on member states to prohibit all kinds of political, economic, commercial and cultural relations with Israel.

The approved law is very strict and punishes any contact, even individually, between Lebanese and Israeli citizens.

Israel and Lebanon have technically been at war for decades although the last major conflict was the 33-day-long Israeli military onslaught on the country in the summer of 2006.

Israel invaded Lebanon in 1982 during the latter’s civil war and occupied Lebanese territory until 2000.


Cyprus  |  Lebanon  |  Israel

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