Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry slammed the UK government’s decision to suspend flights to and from the Sharm El-Sheikh tourist city in Sinai, calling it a “surprising and premature decision”. He said, in statements to CNN, a judgement was made before investigations into the Russian airplane crash were completed.
UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said the decision was taken “due to the government’s belief the downing of an airbus over the Sinai peninsula could have been caused by an explosive device”, reported The Guardian.
Hammond stated “the safety of British nationals must come first”, to which Shoukry expressed understanding, but maintained that it was too early to reach conclusions on the wrecked Russian airbus flight that fell last Saturday, killing above 200 passengers on board.
The Egyptian authorities said that the airplane’s black box results were yet to be finalised. The Russian Sputnik news outlet reported that British aviation experts arrived in Sharm El-Sheikh to assess the safety of its airport and flights bound for the United Kingdom.
This comes as Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi is currently on a diplomatic visit to the UK and is scheduled to meet with UK Prime Minister David Cameron.