Railway services to Upper Egypt to resume again

Ahram Online, Monday 25 Nov 2013

Another attempt to restart train services to Upper Egypt from Wednesday

File photo: Egyptian men rush to catch a train after hours of waiting due to a train drivers strike at the main train station in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, April 8, 2013 (Photo: AP)

Railway services connecting Cairo to Upper Egypt will resume Wednesday, according to a statement by Egyptian National Railways on Monday.

An earlier attempt to resume services on 14 routes connecting Cairo with Upper Egypt was made last Saturday, but the journeys were suspended again for security reasons.

Train services to and from Cairo were halted in August after widespread unrest following the dispersal of Islamist protest camps by security forces.

In October, 28 services between the capital and the Mediterranean city of Alexandria were resumed.

Currently, 42 passenger trains connecting the Mediterranean to Cairo are in operation.

Resuming 14 trains to Upper Egypt brings the number of functioning trains to 56 out of a total 168 services between Cairo and nationwide destinations.

The authority has lost LE4 million daily since the stoppages began.

"Since the mid-August political turmoil, the authority has sustained [an additional] LE12 million in losses due to damage to offices and lines, and LE21 million as a result of the theft of spare parts and tracks," Nagwa Albeir, the media advisor at Egypt's railway authority, told Ahram Online in October.

Under normal conditions, Egypt's railway service transports around 500 million passengers annually, at a rate of 1.4 million per day, according to the Railway Authority's website.

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