Russia to resume direct flights with Egypt

Weekly service between Moscow and Cairo airports to return after two years.

Direct civilian flights between Moscow and Cairo are scheduled to resume on 3 February, after a break of more than a two years, following the signing of a deal between Russia and Egypt.
Moscow suspended flights to Egypt after a bomb brought down a Russian airliner
over the troubled Sinai province in October 2015, killing all 224 people on board. The attack on the plane, operated by Russian airline Kogalymavia, was claimed by local Islamic State-affiliated militants.
The return of the weekly Moscow-Cairo service by Russian flag carrier Aeroflot comes after Russian resident Vladimir Putin authorised the resumption of regular civilian flights between the two countries earlier this month. As part of the new deal, Egypt Air is also expected to begin operating weekly Cairo-Moscow direct flights.
Negotiations remain in progress concerning the resumption of direct flights from Russia to the Egyptian resort towns of Hurghada and Sharm El-Sheikh, whose security arrangements have yet to meet Moscow's approval.
Egypt's airports have undergone a major security upgrade since the attack which dealt a further blow to Egypt's once booming tourism sector. Before the 2015 plane crash Russians made up almost 20 per cent of tourist arrivals to Egypt, the largest of any single country.
Civil unrest and militant attacks have devastated Egypt's tourism sector which has been ailing since the 2011 revolution that led to the overthrow of former president Hosni Mubarak.