British MPs recommend resumption of flights to Sharm

Aswat Masriya , Sunday 17 Jan 2016

Sameh Shoukry
Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry receives delegation of members of the British House of Commons and House of Lords (Photo: the Ministry of Foreign Affairs)

During their visit to Cairo on Sunday, a delegation of members of the British House of Commons and the House of Lords affirmed they would recommend the resumption of British air flights to Sharm El-Sheikh upon their return to the U.K., the Egyptian foreign ministry spokesman said.

Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry received the joint delegation comprised of representatives of the ruling Conservative Party in the context of the latter's visit to Cairo, following the formation of the Egyptian parliament.

The Egyptian parliament convened for the first time on 10 January for its procedural session. This marks the third and final pillar of the political transition roadmap.

The British delegation further asserted its determination to strengthen relations with the people and government of Egypt, according to the foreign ministry spokesperson Ahmed Abu Zeid.

Abu Zeid added that the delegation acknowledges the significance of the tourist sector to the Egyptian economy, and seeks to overcome the difficulties that may have affected Egyptian-British relations recently.

The downing of a Russian plane in the Sinai Peninsula late October had caused wide scale ramifications on an international scale, leading to several countries cutting off air flights to Sharm El-Shiekh.

ISIS affiliates in Egypt, formerly known as Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, claimed responsibility for downing the Russian plane.

The Russian Parliament, Kremlin, previously announced that the results of the Russian investigation into the passenger plane crash found that it was an act of terrorism, and suspected that a homemade bomb had been leaked into the plane.

However, an Egypt-led committee tasked with investigating the cause of the Russian airliner crash has announced late December that it has yet to prove the existence of "unlawful interference or a terrorist act".

Egyptian tourism was slowly inching towards recovery when the Russian plane crashed and Egypt fears that the ramifications of this incident will cause damage to its tourism sector, a vital source of much-needed hard currency. 

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