Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion airport forced to ground departing flights amid protests

Tel Aviv Ben Gurion International Airport (TLV) is facing a potential complete halt to its operations due to nation-wide protests
ChameleonsEye /

Tel Aviv Ben Gurin International Airport (TLV) is halting all departing flights from the airport after Israel’s national trade union center, the Histadrut, called a general strike. 

The announcement was made by the Israel Airport Authority’s Board Chairman Pinchas Idan following Histadrut’s call for a general strike across the country. 

For the time being, aircraft will still be able to land at TLV.  

Data from shows that currently only flights departing to Germany have been canceled, which is also experiencing a general strike by its unions, affecting airport operations across the country. 

At the same time, some flights were delayed, such as Wizz Air flight W68430 from TLV to Naples Airport (NAP) that was scheduled to depart at 11:05 AM local time (UTC +3) and delayed until 11:50 AM. The flight eventually departed at 11:44 AM.   

Delta Air Lines flight DL249 from the Israeli capital to Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport (ATL) has been pushed back from 11:30 AM local time to 12:30 PM local time, while Ryanair flight FR5813 from TLV to Rome Leonardo da Vinci Fiumicino Airport (FCO) was scheduled to depart at 11:30 AM local time without doing so, per information viewed at the time of publication. 

In a press conference on March 27, 2023, Arnon Bar-David, the Chairman of Histadrut, announced a general strike, stating that “last night, all red lines were crossed”, referring to the firing of Israel’s Minister of Defense, Yoav Gallant. Gallant was let go by Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu on March 26, 2023. 

Gallant spoke out against the juridical reforms taking place in the country, arguing in a Facebook post, published late in the day on March 25, 2023, that a “growing rift in society penetrates the IDF [Israeli Defense Force – ed. note] and the security bodies” of Israel. 

“For the safety of Israel, for our sons and daughters: we need to stop the legislative process at this time –allow the people of Israel to celebrate together Passover and Independence Day and mourn together on Memorial Day and Holocaust Day. These are holy days for us,” the now-former Defense Minister continued.   

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