An Arab Gulf state will allow Israeli civilian flights to enter its airspace, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu announced Monday, cutting the travel time from Israel to India.
Speaking at an Israeli Foreign Ministry conference on Monday, Netanyahu revealed that Israeli passenger jets will now be permitted to fly over the Gulf Arab state of Oman, on the southeastern end of the Arabian Peninsula.
According to Netanyahu, the Sultan of Oman, Qaboos bin Said al Said, had given permission to Israel’s national airline, El Al, to enter his country’s airspace.
“The Sultan of Oman, Qaboos, has permitted El Al flights over Oman,” said Netanyahu.
Netanyahu said that the decision to permit El Al flights was part of a broader change in Israel’s position globally.
“Our diplomatic map has changed dramatically, following diplomatic efforts by Israel.”
The announcement comes following Netanyahu’s meeting with the Sultan during a trip to the Arab state in October. The visit was the first of its kind to the Gulf state by an Israeli Prime Minister since Yitzhak Rabin’s 1996 trip to Oman.
Earlier this year, Saudi Arabia also permitted flights to and from Israel to enter its airspace, green lighting plans by Air India to create a shortened route between Tel Aviv and New Delhi.