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Israel’s national airline, El Al, plans to stop flying to Cairo because it says planes on that route have been virtually empty. Israelis, and tourists at large, are afraid to travel to Egypt because of street violence and instability, and the route has become unprofitable since the Egypt’s Arab Spring uprising began more than a year ago.
Politically, the flights between Cairo and Tel Aviv are a symbol of the two nations’ 33-year-old peace treaty. But now, El Al says keeping the route operational simply doesn’t make economic sense.
“Operating the flight route to Cairo and maintaining the necessary infrastructure for that requires a large amount of security and operational resources, and heavy economic expenditure which amounts to hundreds of thousands of dollars annually,” El Al CEO Eliezer Shakedi said in a letter to Israel’s Foreign Ministry.