Terminal 3 at Ben Gurion Airport
Terminal 3 at Ben Gurion AirportT.P.S.

The Israel Airports Authority has announced that the restrictions on flights will not be removed until at least September, News 13 reported Monday evening.

The healthcare system is also concerned about large numbers of Israelis living abroad coming into Israel for the holiday season, and for this reason the skies will remain closed during the holidays as well, Maariv reported.

Israel banned the entry of foreigners in early March, in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Currently, foreigners are only allowed to enter Israel in certain situations, and only with prior government approval.

Reports later claimed that Israel would reopen international flights in July, but airlines have been wary of restarting flights until Israel lifts its requirement that all tourists spend 14 days in quarantine upon arrival in Israel.

Last week, Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz (Likud) warned that the rising number of coronavirus infections and seriously ill patients has forced Israel to choose between keeping its skies closed and a full lockdown.

In an interview with 103 FM Radio, Steinitz said, "My position is to impose a closure. We should have imposed a closure of 10 days and we should have done this a month ago or more because it is important to lower the morbidity data immediately and dramatically - a sharp step aimed at eventually opening the skies to flights."