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Russian inspectors reviewing conditions to resume air travel with Egypt’s resorts

Government’s headquarters to study all reports and make the relevant decision

MOSCOW, June 1. /TASS/. Russian specialists have thoroughly examined the conditions necessary to resume air travel with Egyptian resorts, and the government will make its final decision, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Tuesday.

"Indeed, these inspection visits did occur, and our specialists studied everything on site. Once all the reports are sent to the government’s headquarters that deals with this issue, then this headquarters will be the one to make a relevant decision," he specified.

Peskov remained tight-lipped on a specific date when such air travel can be launched. "I won’t make any predictions. As far as the dates go, that’s the headquarters’ purview," the spokesman stressed.

Egyptian aviation officials told TASS on Sunday that Russian experts had arrived in the country to inspect international airports of Egypt’s resorts.

Flights to Egyptian resorts

On April 23, Russian Vladimir Putin and his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi agreed to relaunch air travel between Russian cities and the Red Sea resorts. In early May, Moscow’s envoy to Cairo Georgy Borisenko said that aviation authorities and security agencies should complete all the necessary measures to resume flights. However, he noted that the timeline to resume air travel would largely depend on the developments linked to the coronavirus pandemic.

Flights between Russia and Egypt had been fully suspended in November 2015 after a passenger plane operated by Russia’s Kogalymavia airline traveling from Sharm El Sheikh to St. Petersburg exploded over the Sinai Peninsula, killing all 217 passengers and seven crew members onboard. The FSB qualified the incident as a terror attack.

In January 2018, Putin signed an executive order to resume regular flights to Cairo, but charter flights to Egyptian resorts are still suspended. Over the past few years, the Egyptian side has dramatically improved its system of checks for passengers and luggage and tremendously improved its airport infrastructure.