Benjamin Netanyahu Spends $127K on El Al Airplane 'Resting Chamber'

Airline Creates Special Compartment for Premier and Wife

haaretz

By Haaretz

Published May 11, 2013.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spent $127,000 of Israeli taxpayers’ money on a “resting chamber” that was especially constructed for him and his wife on their five-hour flight to London last month, Channel 10 reported.

The Prime Minister’s Office asked that the plane be fitted with 22 business class seats and a resting chamber – a double bed surrounded by four walls and a door. This request was especially costly because only El Al’s larger planes are fitted to allow for such arrangements. El Al won the tender with a bid of $427,000.

If the Prime Minister’s Office were to forgo the resting chamber, Israel’s smaller airlines such as Arkia and Israir could have participated in the tender. A simple calculation showed that the resting chamber raised the price of the flight by $127,000.

“The protocol for flying the prime minister to meetings abroad hadn’t changed and is the same as was during previous administrations. In accordance to security directives, the Israeli premier only travels with Israeli airlines,” the Prime Minister’s Office said in a statement.

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