NEW YORK, July 23 (UPI) -- Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg flew to Tel Aviv Tuesday to protest the FAA ban on U.S. flights to Israel, arguing that it is perfectly safe.
"I'm not trying to prove anything. I'm just trying to show that it's safe, and a great place to visit, and Israel has a right to defend its people, and they're doing exactly what they should be doing," Bloomberg said.
"The flight restrictions are a mistake that hand Hamas an undeserved victory and should be lifted immediately. I strongly urge the [Federal Aviation Administration] to reverse course and permit U.S. airlines to fly to Israel," he said in an earlier statement.
Bloomberg arrived safely in Israel, where he met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and praised his country's secure airport.
Safely landed at Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv - here to show support for Israel's right to defend itself.— Mike Bloomberg (@MikeBloomberg) July 23, 2014