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Egypt's civil aviation minister heads to Russia to look into resumption of flights

Ahram Online , Sunday 17 Jul 2016
russian plane
In this image released by the Prime Minister's office, Sherif Ismail, right, looks at the remains of a crashed passenger jet in Hassana Egypt, Friday, Oct. 31, 2015
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Views: 2885

Egyptian Civil Aviation Minister Sherif Fathy travelled to Moscow on Sunday for a three-day visit to look into resuming flights between Egypt and Russia, state-owned MENA agency reported.

According to MENA, Fathy is heading a delegation to review ways to resume flights, which were suspended by Moscow after the downing of a Russian passenger jet in Sinai last October.

The minister’s visit comes only days after the speaker of Egypt’s parliament, Ali Abdel-Al, said during an official visit to Russia that Egypt was now expecting steps to be taken by the Russian side towards resuming flights, after Egypt had fulfilled 85 percent of Russia’s demands regarding aviation safety.

The Airbus A321 was heading to St. Petersburg from Sharm El-Sheikh on 31 October, when it crashed in Sinai, killing all 224 people on board.

Following the crash Russia suspended direct flights to and from all Egyptian airports, while the United Kingdom and Germany suspended flights to Sharm El-Sheikh airport. The flight suspensions have hit Egypt's tourism industry hard.

An affiliate of the Islamic State in Sinai claimed responsibility for the attack, and Russia's investigative committee later officially classified the plane crash as a terrorist attack. Egypt's official investigative committee has yet to issue a verdict on the causes of the crash.

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