Egyptian passengers stage sit-in on Saudi Airlines aircraft upon arrival in Cairo

Ahram Online, Wednesday 31 Aug 2011

Protest on Cairo Airport runway staged by 37 Egyptians furious at what they describe as the 'inhumane treatmant' they suffered in Jeddah Airport while waiting to board their flight

Thirty seven passengers in a Saudi Airlines plane staged a sit-in for two hours after landing in Cairo Wednesday. The passengers had been making a pilgrimage to Mecca.

The sit-in was in protest against the in-humane treatment which many Egyptians have alleged they received in Saudi Arabia’s Jeddah Airport.

Security officials at Cairo Airport say that they were informed by Saudi Airlines that the sit-in was taking place inside the plane. Accordingly, security was sent to end the protest so as to allow the flight to continue its journey. After two hours, security personnel were able to convince the protesting passengers to leave. They were promised that their complains would be recorded by Egypt’s tourism police who would open an investigation into the matter.

The passengers' complaints relate to what they describe as the inhumane treatment they received while waiting to make their journey home from Jeddah. Their flight had been delayed for over 11 hours, during which they were forced to wait among thousands in a room meant to house no more than 200 people. Their ordeal was compounded by the air-conditioning being kept off, leading to tens of passengers passing out. 

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