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As the Federal Aviation Administration extended its ban on U.S. flights to Tel Aviv for a second day Wednesday, Israel's tourism ministry sought to quell concerns among would-be U.S. visitors, noting that 75,000 foreign tourists are presently in the country and "their travel arrangements are proceeding as planned."

Among those visitors is former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, who arrived Wednesday in Tel Aviv via Israeli airline El Al, "to show support for Israel's right to defend itself," he wrote on Twitter.

El Al has added additional flights to accommodate passengers waylaid by canceled flights on Delta, United, US Airways and a number of European carriers. The flight stoppage was initiated Tuesday after a rocket landed near Tel Aviv's airport.

Bloomberg expressed confidence in Israeli security and the safety of El Al, in particular.

"I think compared to the security at American airports, security at Ben Gurion airport is infinitely better ..." he told Fox News. "You've got to remember that Israel has been under threat since 1948 when it was founded so ,,, they take security much more seriously here and on El Al ... than we do in America."

Meanwhile, a U.S.-based Israeli tourism official issued a statement meant to reassure potential visitors.

"Please know that tourism is continuing, and hotels, restaurants, tourist sites and holy places are open as usual," Haim Gutin, Israel tourism commissioner for North and South America said in a statement Wednesday.

It's too soon to determine the economic fallout caused by the interruption to air travel to and from the country. But escalating Israeli-Palestinian violence that began early in July prompted the Israel Hotel Association to estimate $125 million in lost revenue, mostly due to cancellations by Israelis who were opting to stay home.

Israel's Incoming Tour Operators Association blamed the security situation for a 20% drop in revenue for bookings between July and December, according to the Israeli business publication Calcalist.

U.S. visitors make up 20% of the 3.5 million foreign travelers to Israel, but summer is not prime season for so-called "Christian travel."

"The majority of people who go from America to Israel (in summer) are world travelers who are going because it's on their bucket list, or they're Jewish-Americans," said tourism spokesman Geoffrey Weill. "Over the last few weeks, numbers have dropped, but they haven't been dropping through the floor by any means. The flights have been coming in full."

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A number of entertainers have canceled their performances in Israel, including the Backstreet Boys, Paul Anka, Neil Young, and America.

The Backstreet Boys pulled out of shows scheduled for July 29, 30, and 31 at Raanana Amphitheater "due to the security situation," the band said on its website.

Paul Anka was scheduled to perform this week in Tel Aviv but has postponed due to the hostilities.

Last week, Delta reported 500 or so cancellations on its U.S.-Tel Aviv flights in July, and a fewer number in August. Cancellations for September were "negligible."

But that was before the FAA's flight ban and the State Department's revamped travel advisory recommending that travelers postpone nonessential travel to Israel, the West Band and Gaza. .

"Are people walking into travel agencies and booking trips to Israel? No," Weill said. "It's a wait-and-see situation."

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