Air Canada flight delayed by rockets over Tel Aviv

Air Canada flight delayed by rockets over Tel Aviv
Passengers walk past a sign pointing to a shelter at Ben Gurion International airport, near Tel Aviv July 24, 2014.

MONTREAL - An Air Canada flight from Toronto was forced to circle the Tel Aviv airport before landing Friday after rockets were fired over the Israeli capital, an airline spokeswoman said.

"Eight kilometers away from landing at the Tel Aviv airport this morning, the pilots of Flight AC84 were ordered into a standard holding pattern by Israeli air traffic control," Air Canada spokeswoman Isabelle Arthur said.

The aircraft was asked to continue circling overhead "until the airspace was deemed secure," before landing safely, she said.

As a result the flight was delayed 10 minutes, she added.

Earlier Hamas said it had targeted the airport, while the Israeli army confirmed that it intercepted two rockets fired from the Gaza Strip.

On Tuesday, missiles fired at the airport had forced the cancellation of several American and European flights.

Flight AC84 was Air Canada's first flight to Tel Aviv since the airline joined others in suspending trips to the city. It later departed for Toronto at 2 pm local time.

"The security of our passengers and of our crew is our top priority," said Arthur. "And we will continue to monitor the situation."

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