Photo Credit: Hadas Parush / Flash 90
Israeli Minister of Transportation Yisrael Katz during a test drive of the Jerusalem-Tel Aviv express train in central Israel on January 16, 2018.

Israel’s new high-speed electric train made its first test run on Tuesday between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, with Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz aboard together with a mob of media photographers and journalists.

Katz gave his word that the line would open on time on the eve of Passover the year, even though it probably would not be able to run its complete route.

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Initially the train will run from Jerusalem to the Tel Aviv Ha’Hagana station via Ben Gurion International Airport.

The minister promised free rides for all, at least for the first three months.

Passengers boarding at the new “Navon” train station between Jerusalem’s central bus station and Binyanei Ha’Uma (International Convention Center) will be able to travel free anywhere in the country for that period.

There will also be a fifty percent discount for riders after the first three months, until the route is completed.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.