Evacuation Flight for Austrians from Israel: Austrian Government and Armed Forces Respond to Security Situation

PeopleOther ♦ Published: October 10, 2023; 15:16 ♦ (Vindobona)

Due to the ongoing tense security situation in Israel, which has led to numerous airlines suspending their connections to the country, the Austrian government has decided to take evacuation measures for its citizens.

A Hercules aircraft of the Austrian Armed Forces from the Hörsching air base will fly Austrians out of Israel. / Picture: © Bundesheer/Pusch

Evacuation flights from Israel to Cyprus are offered in cooperation with the Austrian Armed Forces. "The offer of scheduled flights from Israel has decreased. Therefore, in cooperation with the Ministry of Defense, we are offering evacuation flights to Cyprus," said Foreign Minister Schallenberg.

Austrians who wish to take advantage of these evacuation flights are asked to register immediately by e-mail at the Austrian Embassy in Tel Aviv. Citizens who are already registered to travel will be contacted directly and informed about further steps. Foreign Minister Schallenberg stressed the importance of the Red-White-Red Crisis Team: "They are ready as the first point of contact at the airports to offer support."

The evacuation will be carried out by several flights of a Hercules C-130 of the Austrian Armed Forces from Tel Aviv to Paphos, Cyprus. From there, there are regularly scheduled flights to Vienna, the frequency of which has recently been increased. This aircraft will take off from Hörsching and is capable of transporting a maximum of 90 people per flight. The exact route of the flight, whether directly to Israel or first to Cyprus, has not yet been determined. However, it is certain that a total of about 200 Austrians will be brought to Cyprus, from where they can continue their journey with regular airlines.

Defense Minister Klaudia Tanner also expressed concern about the situation: "The attack on Israel is to be condemned in the strongest possible terms. We will do everything we can to get our citizens out of harm's way as quickly as possible." She confirmed that in addition to the Hercules C-130, a military crisis support team will also be deployed.

To carry out the evacuation smoothly, mobile crisis teams of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs are available at Ben Gurion Airport in Israel and Paphos Airport in Cyprus. They support the Austrian Armed Forces and assist travelers. Meanwhile, the news continues to report on the unrest in Israel, including the kidnappings of between 100 and 150 people carried out by Hamas. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed that Austrian dual nationals are among those missing in Israel.

Austrian MFA