Israel's airlines have asked the national government for emergency help to balance losses being incurred as a result of the "Protective Edge" operation in Gaza.

The request for aid is included in a letter signed by the chief executives of El Al, Arkia and Israir, and addressed to the ministers of transportation, finance, economy and tourism.

In their letter, the chief executives ask the government to reduce the fees they pay at Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion International airport, at least through the end of this year.

The airlines are also requesting state-backed loans to pay suppliers and to boost their cash flow, and want help with covering wage costs. They also are seeking a grant to cover the cost of the many pilots and technical staff called up by reserve units.

The government is also being asked to compensate the airlines for the longer flightpaths imposed as a result of rockets being launched from inside Gaza and the operation of Israel's defensive Iron Dome rocket interceptors.

Source: Flight International