HAPPENING NOW: American Airlines and USAirways canceled today’s to & from flights between Tel Aviv & Philadelphia due to security concerns.
In addition, Delta flight 468- a Boeing 747 from JFK with 290 aboard- was diverted to Paris after reports of rocket or debris near Tel Aviv airport. Delta has suspended service to and from Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv and its New York-JFK hub until further notice.
United has also suspended Tel Aviv operations until further notice.
A Ben Gurion airport spokesman said the airport is safe and the decisions were made independently by the individual airlines. However, reports emerged that a rocket landed near the airport as recently as an hour ago.
UPDATE #1- Official statement from American on Tel Aviv operations
The safety of our passengers and crew is American’s top priority. We have cancelled US Airways Flight 797 from Tel Aviv (TLV) to Philadelphia (PHL) and Flight 796 from PHL to TLV for July 22 in response to security concerns at TLV. We are reaching out to customers and working with other airlines to reaccommodate those affected. We remain in contact with the FAA and continue to monitor the situation.
For customers with future travel plans to Tel Aviv, we have extended our travel advisory and our flexible ticketing policy through August 31. Customers who choose to change their travel plans can do so without change fees.
We are ferrying our crew members out of TLV today. The FAA will not allow us to transport customers on this flight, which is operating with a special waiver.
UPDATE #2- The FAA has announced no American flights will come in or out of the Ben Gurion airport for up to 24 hours.