DUBAI, Nov 23, (RTRS): Kuwait Airways will launch direct flights to Sharm el-Sheikh starting on Dec 1 to support Egypt’s tourism sector following a Russian plane crash that killed 224 people, Kuwait’s minister of information was quoted as saying. State news agency KUNA quoted Sheikh Salman Al-Sabah as saying at a conference in Cairo that the primary purpose of the new regular flights was to boost Kuwaiti support for Egypt, under direct orders from the Amir, Kuwait’s state carrier already flies to Cairo, Alexandria and Sohag but has offered only seasonal flights to Sharm el- Sheikh, a beach and diving holiday destination on the Red Sea. With Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait has provided billions of dollars of aid in the last two years to support Egypt’s economy and help maintain political stability.
The Russian airliner’s crash on Oct 31 after taking off from Sharm el-Sheikh is expected to hit Egypt’s vital tourism industry, already ravaged by years of political instability following the 2011 uprising which overthrew Hosni Mubarak. Russia’s FSB security service has said it is certain a bomb brought down the Airbus jet, joining Britain and the United States in reaching that conclusion. Since the crash, some airlines have suspended flights to Sharm el-Sheikh for security reasons.