Scandinavian Airlines says it will drop its only route to Israel because of declining demand.

The airline, which is half owned by the governments of Sweden, Denmark and Norway, says it will cancel the Copenhagen-Tel Aviv route in March 2016. The route opened in 2012.

Airline spokesman Henrik Edstrom on Tuesday rejected suggestions in Israeli media that the decision was taken in response to political instability, saying "that could be among the reasons that demand has declined, but it's a purely commercial decision."

He added that "it's an expensive route to fly. A long short-distance route. And there's a lot of competition on that route."