An Israeli traveller presents his passport upon arrival at the Dubai airport on November 26, when flydubai's first commercial flight from Tel Aviv landed in the emirate.   (AFP file photo used for illustrative purpose)
An Israeli traveller presents his passport upon arrival at the Dubai airport on November 26, when flydubai's first commercial flight from Tel Aviv landed in the emirate. (AFP file photo used for illustrative purpose)

200 Israeli tourists stranded at Dubai airport allowed entry

Dubai - Several Israeli tourists have been coming to the UAE since passenger services between the two countries started last month.



by

Anjana Sankar

Published: Mon 7 Dec 2020, 3:13 PM

Last updated: Wed 23 Dec 2020, 11:58 AM

Around 200 Israelis who were stranded at the Dubai airport on Monday morning have been allowed entry, Khaleej Times can confirm.

The passengers from Israel, who landed at Dubai International Airport on a flydubai flight from Tel Aviv, were denied entry due to some “misunderstanding”, and it has been resolved, Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Lior Haiat told Khaleej Times.

“The issue was addressed by the highest authorities of both the UAE and Israeli Foreign Ministry. (The tourists) filled out the electronic visa form and were allowed to enter the country,” said Haiat.

He said approval was also received for the additional flights from Israel to the UAE, which are expected to take off soon.

The UAE and Israel have agreed on visa-free travel for their citizens after the two countries normalised relations by signing the Abraham Accords in September.

Last week, the UAE announced that tourists shall be issued for Israeli citizens until the agreement for mutual visa exemption comes into force. The country has started issuing these tourist visas through airlines and travel and tourism companies.

Flydubai has apologised to the passengers who experienced a delay on arrival to Dubai, according to a statement. It is currently reviewing the reasons behind the incident and is revalidating the procedures to prevent any other delays to subsequent flights.

The authorities have assured that the policy permitting the entry of Israeli citizens remains unchanged, and Israeli citizens continue to be welcomed to the UAE.

There has been a flood of Israeli tourists coming to Dubai since passenger services between the two countries started last month.

Read on: Israel expects 100,000 tourists from UAE by 2021, says minister

Flydubai has been operating two daily services between Dubai and Tel Aviv since November 26. Israeli carriers Israir and Arkia have also launched daily flights to Dubai.

Several flights packed with Israeli tourists and businessmen have already landed in the emirate in the past week. Direct flights are also expected to be launched between Tel Aviv and Bahrain, the second Gulf country to normalise relations with its Jewish neighbour.

anjana@khaleejtimes.com


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