LOCALS in Paphos are fuming as cut-price carrier Ryanair gears up to axe their popular daily Athens connection, which will be replaced by a new service to Tel Aviv.

Flights between Paphos to Tel Aviv will commence on March 28, just 48-hours after the Greek route is discontinued.

A glance at social media shows locals consider the Athens route by far the most popular offered by the Irish airline; whilst many argue the new Israel flights will provide a service only for political, commercial and economic interests – and not the general public.

Tensions were stoked in recent days after it was announced a delegation from the municipality would be involved in the launch flight of the new Tel Aviv service, when they visit Israel next week.

The general gist of online comment is that no one in the region is interested in connections to Israel, other than ‘a few businesses and the local municipality.’

The Athens route had been hugely popular with locals, as it offered affordable connections to the Greek capital all year round.

The municipality has said it hopes the new flights connecting Israel will ferry in more tourists to Paphos this year.