- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 23, 2014

A spokesman for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Wednesday that Israel does airport security “very, very well” and that he hopes American airlines will be back flying into the country soon.

“Our airport is safe; our airport is secure,” Mark Regev said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

The Federal Aviation Administration on Tuesday issued a notice banning U.S. airlines from flying to Israel’s main Ben Gurion International Airport for up to 24 hours after a rocket landed nearby, though Secretary of State John Kerry has arrived in the country in hopes of jump-starting stalled cease-fire talks.

“Never underestimate the weight of U.S. diplomatic power,” Mr. Regev said, noting that President Obama and Mr. Kerry have been crystal clear on Israel’s right to defend itself in the latest battle with Hamas.

He said the biggest challenge to a peace deal is Hamas and that “it would be a very interesting development” if they stop shooting rockets.

“I don’t think they’re about to do that, though,” he said.

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