PM Talks with Pilot Who Brought Pfizer Drug

Airport workers unload packages of Pfizer’s COVID-fighting Paxlovid pill at Ben Gurion Airport on Thursday. (Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90)

The Prime Minister’s Office released a transcript of a conversation between PM Naftali Bennett and Eran Sapir, the pilot of the El Al plane that brought the Pfizer drug to Israel on Thursday, and El Al CEO Avigal Sorek:

Eran Sapir: “Good evening Mr. Prime Minister. This is Eran Sapir speaking, the pilot of flight #234 which landed a few moments ago, with very important cargo in the hold of the plane – drugs for the State of Israel.”

Prime Minister Bennett: “Eran, thank you. You and your crew have done good work. I want to thank you and everyone who took part in the effort for joining in to bring the drug here exactly on time, a moment before the State of Israel enters the peak of the Omicron wave. This drug is arriving at the right time.

Together with people from the health system and the other systems in the country, we devoted the past weeks to preparing for entering the peak of the wave. Part of the preparations is also seeing to significant stocks of this important drug. In addition to our having the drugs, and I hope that we will not need to use them, the best thing is to get vaccinated, of course. I would like to thank you Eran. I would be pleased to speak with Avigal as well.”

Eran Sapir: “I will pass you on to Avigal right away. We are pleased to have been those who brought the drugs and we should all take another step to move us all toward exiting this pandemic quickly.”

Prime Minister Bennett: “Correct. With hard work we will deal with the pandemic. We will get past this wave as well.”

Eran Sapir: “As aviation sector personnel, we have felt the pandemic very strongly and still are. For the good of us all and for the good of the State of Israel, let’s get out of this as quickly as possible. Thank you Mr. Prime Minister.”

El Al CEO Avigal Sorek: “Mt. Prime Minister, good evening.”

Prime Minister Bennett: “Avigal, how are you?”

El Al CEO Avigal Sorek: “I’m OK. We are pleased to have played a small and important part in your efforts to defeat this pandemic. We are very proud that we have the privilege to take a small but very important step for the health of the people of Israel. We are proud to be the national airline.”

Prime Minister Bennett: “I am very pleased by the operation and for your effort. I want to thank you and the crews. This is also an opportunity to thank everyone – from the health system, from Pfizer, with whom the work has been good. The drugs are arriving precisely at the critical point. We are now entering the peak of the wave and I am very pleased that it has arrived now.”

El Al CEO Avigal Sorek: “Again, for myself and on behalf of the employees of El Al, I would like to thank you for supporting the airline. I am certain that you are thinking about the airlines at this difficult time. I know they are and I would like to thank you very much for this.”

Prime Minister Bennett: “Absolutely, thank you very much.”

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