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First-ever flight: Plane with US, Israeli officials lands in UAE

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High-level delegations from Israel and the US have arrived in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), via the first-ever commercial flight between the Middle Eastern nations, to put final touches on a controversial pact establishing open relations.

Top aides to US President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu were on board the direct flight from Tel Aviv to the UAE capital Abu Dhabi on Israel’s flag carrier El Al on Monday.

Flight LY971 flew over Saudi Arabia after Riyadh agreed to the Israeli request on Sunday, marking the first time an Israeli commercial plane uses Saudi territory for an overflight.

The plane carrying the US and Israeli delegations to Abu Dhabi has the word “peace” written on it in English, Hebrew, and Arabic. It is also named after Kiryat Gat, a Jewish settlement built on the remains of two ethnically cleansed Palestinian villages, Iraq al-Manshiyya and al-Faluja.

Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammed Shtayyeh on Monday slammed the flight as “very painful” and “a clear and a blatant violation of the Arab position towards the Arab-Israeli conflict”.

“We had hoped to see an Emirati plane landing in a liberated Jerusalem, but we live in a difficult Arab era,” he said.

Announced on August 13, the “normalisation” deal is the first such accommodation between an Arab country and Israel in more than 20 years and was catalysed largely by shared fears of Iran.

Palestinians were dismayed by the UAE’s move, worried it would weaken a long-standing pan-Arab position that called for Israeli withdrawal from occupied territory and acceptance of Palestinian statehood in return for normal relations with Arab countries.

Hamas spokesperson Hazem Qassen said the UAE-Israel deal went against the position of the Emirati people, and was “in Zionist interests only … fuelling disagreements in the region”.

Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner and National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien head the US delegation. The Israeli team is led by O’Brien’s counterpart, Meir Ben-Shabbat.

Kushner voiced hope for a more peaceful era in the region.

“While this is a historic flight, we hope that it will start an even more historic journey in the Middle East and beyond,” Kushner said before boarding the El Al aircraft.

Officials will explore bilateral cooperation in areas such as commerce and tourism, and Israeli defence envoys are due to visit the UAE separately.

Israeli officials hope the two-day trip will produce a date for a signing ceremony in Washington, perhaps as early as September, between Netanyahu and Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

That could give Trump a foreign policy boost ahead of his re-election bid in November.

In Jerusalem on Sunday, Kushner called the UAE-Israel deal a “giant step forward”.

“To have played a role in its creation, and I say this as the grandson of two Holocaust survivors, it means more to me and to my family that I can ever express,” Kushner said.

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ഡ്രൈവിംഗ് ലൈസന്‍സ് ഉള്‍പ്പെടെയുള്ള മോട്ടോര്‍ വാഹന രേഖകളുടെ കാലാവധി ഡിസംബര്‍ 31 വരെ നീട്ടി

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ന്യൂഡല്‍ഹി: കാലാവധി അവസാനിക്കുന്ന മോട്ടോര്‍ വാഹന രേഖകളുടെയും ലൈസന്‍സിന്റെയും സാധുത ഈ വര്‍ഷം ഡിസംബര്‍ വരെ നീട്ടി. നേരത്തെ, കാലാവധി കഴിയുന്ന മോട്ടോര്‍ വാഹനരേഖകളുടെയും ലൈസന്‍സിന്റെയും കാലാവധി ഈ വര്‍ഷം സെപ്തംബര്‍ 30 വരെ നീട്ടിയിരുന്നു.

മഹാമാരി കണക്കിലെടുത്താണ് ഡ്രൈവംഗ് ലൈസന്‍സ് ഉള്‍പ്പെടെയുള്ള കാലാവധി കഴിയുന്ന മോട്ടോര്‍ വാഹന രേഖകളുടെ സാധുത നീട്ടിയത്. ഫിറ്റ്നസ് സര്‍ട്ടിഫിക്കറ്റ്, പെര്‍മിറ്റ്, ഡ്രൈവിംഗ് ലൈസന്‍സ്, രജിസ്ട്രേഷന്‍ തുടങ്ങിയ സര്‍ട്ടിഫിക്കറ്റുകളുടെ സാധുത ജൂണ്‍ 30 വരെ നീട്ടുമെന്ന് മാര്‍ച്ച്‌ 30ന് പുറപ്പെടുവിച്ച നിര്‍ദ്ദേശത്തില്‍ കേന്ദ്രസര്‍ക്കാര്‍ വ്യക്തമാക്കിയിരുന്നു.

മോട്ടോര്‍ വാഹന രേഖകളുടെ പരിധിയില്‍ വരുന്ന ഡ്രൈവിംഗ് ലൈസന്‍സുകള്‍, വാഹന രജിസ്ട്രേഷന്‍, ഫിറ്റ്നസ്, പെര്‍മിറ്റുകള്‍ എന്നിവയുള്‍പ്പെടെയുള്ള രേഖകളുടെ കാലാവധി നീട്ടി നല്‍കണമെന്ന് ആവശ്യപ്പെട്ട് കേന്ദ്ര റോഡ് ഗതാഗത – ദേശീയ പാത മന്ത്രാലയം മാര്‍ച്ചില്‍ സംസ്ഥാനങ്ങള്‍ക്ക് കത്തയച്ചിരുന്നു. നിലവിലെ സാഹചര്യത്തില്‍ ആളുകള്‍ നേരിടുന്ന ബുദ്ധിമുട്ട് ഒഴിവാക്കാനാണ് ഇത്തരത്തിലൊരു തീരുമാനമെന്ന് കേന്ദ്ര ഗതാഗത മന്ത്രി നിതിന്‍ ഗഡ്ഗരി പറഞ്ഞു.’

കടപ്പാട് : ആഴ്ച്ചവട്ടം ഓൺലൈൻ

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A 2-year-old girl has dropped off her mother and 6 children on a plane for not wearing a mask

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Orlando: Two recent incidents involving young children who refused to wear face masks show how airlines are struggling to balance safety with compassionate treatment of all their customers during a pandemic.

JetBlue Airways forced a woman and her six children off a plane this week when her 2-year-old daughter wouldn’t keep her mask on.

“It was horrible, the whole experience was traumatizing,” the mother, Chaya Bruck, told the New York Daily News from the airport in Orlando, Florida, where the Brooklyn family was stranded.

Last week, a Texas woman said Southwest Airlines booted her family off a plane after one of the children, a 3-year-old with autism, refused to wear a mask. Alyssa Sadler said her son became upset because he does not like to have his face touched.

All major U.S. airlines have mask rules and have banned at least a couple hundred passengers who have refused to comply. Typically, the violators are adults who argue that there is no government requirement to wear a mask — there isn’t; the Federal Aviation Administration has declined to impose one, leaving it up to the airlines.

JetBlue and Southwest both require masks for all passengers except those under the age of 2.

A JetBlue spokesman said the company’s policy mirrors guidelines on masks from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“During these unprecedented times, our first priority is to keep crew members and customers safe, and we’ve quickly introduced new safety policies and procedures throughout the pandemic,” the airline spokesman, Derek Dombrowski, said in an email.

Dombrowski said customers get an email before their flight that details safety rules including the one on face masks, and employees are ready to help customers who need assistance.

Bruck and her family weren’t making a political stand against masks, “she and her other children were wearing them,” said Gary Leff, who writes about travel on his View from the Wing website. “She was doing her best, but some young children aren’t going to keep a mask on and fly much better with a pacifier.”

Leff said “it seems reasonable” to exempt 2- and 3-year-olds from the mask rule.

Sadler, the Houston-area woman kicked off a Southwest flight home from Midland, Texas, said she had a doctor’s note explaining her son’s autism condition, but it didn’t help.

“I think there needs to be something in place for children or even adults with disabilities who can’t wear a mask. They should have some kind of exemption,” she told Houston TV station KPRC.

Southwest is among several airlines that recently tightened the mask rules by ending an exemption for people who claim a medical reason for not covering their face. Southwest’s president said last month the change was made because passengers were uncomfortable seeing other people on board without masks.

Southwest spokesman Dan Landson said Thursday that the airline regrets any inconvenience to the Sadler family. He said passengers 2 and up who can’t wear masks are given refunds and will be welcome on the airline “if public health guidance regarding face coverings changes.”

Airlines have tweaked other pandemic-safety policies such as aircraft cleaning and leaving some seats empty to create more space between passengers.

On Thursday, Delta Air Lines announced that it will continue blocking middle seats during the holidays and through at least Jan. 6. The Christmas season normally means packed planes, but it’s hard to know what flights will look like later this year. U.S. air travel during the peak summer season has been about 70% lower than a year ago.

 

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