Moscow 'wants to deploy Russian officers' in Egyptian airports
Moscow has asked for Russian officers to deploy at Egyptian airports in return for resuming flights to Egypt, a senior official at the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism has said.
Egypt is currently reviewing security procedures at a number of airports used by tourists in areas like Sharm el-Sheikh and will look into the Russian request before making an announcement in August, the official who asked not to be named further told The New Arab.
A new airport security company was created in collaboration with a private term and a British security company, he added.
But the government so far refuses the presence of foreign security officers in Egyptian airports, according to the official.
Russia and Britain had suspended flights to Sharm el-Sheikh last November following the crash of a Russian passenger jet in north-eastern Sinai. All passengers and crew on board were killed.
An Islamic State-affiliated group claimed it was behind the incident, saying it was the result of a bomb it planted on board. But Egyptian authorities are yet to confirm the cause of the crash.
Russian and British tourists accounted for nearly 50 percent of total tourists visiting the country each year.
More than 14.7 million tourists visited Egypt in 2010. The number dropped to 9.8 million in 2011 as political instability followed the ouster of longtime President Hosni Mubarak and as yet to recover.