Putin, Sisi discuss resumption of Russian flights to Egypt

Moscow, March 7 (IANS) Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah al-Sisi discussed over the phone the resumption of Russian flights to Egypt, the Kremlin said on Monday.

“The two sides stressed the importance of creating all necessary conditions for the resumption of Russian flights to Egypt and tourist exchanges,” the Kremlin said in a statement.

On October 31, 2015, a Russia-bound Airbus A321 crashed shortly after taking off from Egypt’s Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, killing all 224 people onboard, mostly Russians.

The Russian Federal Security Service announced later that the plane was brought down by a bomb, and Putin then ordered the suspension of all of the country’s flights to Egypt following the tragedy.

In late February, Sisi said terrorists were behind the crash with the aim to ruin Egyptian ties with other states.

The crash also led some other states, including Britain, to suspend their flights to Egypt’s Sharm el-Sheikh and to evacuate their nationals over security concerns.

Egypt is one of Russians’ main tourist destinations, and the incident dealt a heavy blow to the country’s already battered tourism sector. The Egyptian authorities have been taking a series of measures to boost the tourism industry.

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