The flight was operated on Tuesday 15 November flying from Liege, transporting the tapestries, which had been in Belgium for restoration.
The tapestries were first moved to Malta by ship over 300 years and are now back home in St. John’s Co-Cathedral in Valetta.
Challenge Airlines MT, which was awarded its Air Operator Certificate (AOC) by Transport Malta on 1 November, provided both the flight and the logistical support.
Ian Borg, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, says, “It is a pleasure for us to see that, with a strong intervention from our Embassy in Belgium, through Clint Tanti and the rest of the employees, we were able to bring these tapestries to Malta without any costs for the Maltese Government. Above all, these can now be enjoyed by the public and the tourists who choose to visit the St. John’s Co-Cathedral in Valletta.”
Yossi Shoukroun, CEO of Challenge Group, adds, “Not only do we have the utmost respect for this priceless and unique cargo but, in a way, these tapestries also reflect Challenge Group, since they depict Christian art scenes from Jerusalem, Israel, and were carefully woven over a period of four years in Belgium for Grand Master Fra Ramon Perellós y Roccaful of Malta. Hence, they combine the three countries where Challenge Group has set up hubs and for which we hold Air Operator Certificates.”
Challenge Airlines MT has 2 B767-300ERs and 10 pilots are stationed in Malta ready to operate flights between Liege, Tel Aviv, Sharjah, New York and the Indian Sub-Continent.