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Next time your luggage does not arrive when you land at your destination on El Al, the Airports Authority may not be at blame after all. It could be the pilot's fault.

Two weeks ago an El Al captain of a Boeing 757 flying from a European destination to Israel ordered the removal of a number of passengers' suitcases from the plane to allow two El Al employees to get on the flight.

In this case, the plane had reached its weight limit and the pilot decided to leave some luggage behind. After passengers complained and the airline investigated, the pilot was severely reprimanded, though the pilots union head, Harel Halamish, said the reprimand was "unnecessarily harsh."

Airline employees and their families are alowed to fly for free or with significant discounts if there is room on the plane and conditions permit.

A spokesperson for El Al said: "The company does not comment on matters of employee relations in the media."