Emirates suspends Tunisian pilot for refusing to fly to Israel

Tunisian pilot working for Dubai-based Emirates has said he has been suspended by the Emirati airline after he refused to fly to Israel. Moneem Saheb Tabaa made the announcement on his Facebook page that he later closed, reports say.
“God is [the] only [one] who takes care of me…” Tabaa said in the post. “I do not regret it.” Tabaa is expected to appear before a committee to provide an explanation.
UAE became, last year, the fourth Arab country after Egypt and Jordan to thaw ties with Israel. Morocco, Sudan and Bahrain also established diplomatic ties with Tel Aviv.
Tunisia has ruled out normalization with Israel as it indicated that its position on the Palestinian cause is a principle. “As Tunisia respects the sovereign positions of other countries, it affirms that its stance is principled, and changes in the international scene will never affect it,” said the foreign ministry of the North African country.
UAE and Israel following the September agreement to establish ties, have fast-tracked cooperation in many areas. Emirates according to Israeli website is expected to start operating flights to Tel Aviv from Feb. 15. Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways was the first UAE airline to fly to Israel, carrying medicine bound for Palestine.

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