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Airlines Abruptly Suspend Flights to Egypt

British Airways and Lufthansa ground flights, with BA citing 'heightened risk of terrorism against aviation'
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 21, 2019 6:08 AM CDT
This 2017 file photo shows British Airways planes parked at Heathrow Airport in London. On Saturday, July 20, 2019, British Airways said it is canceling flights to Cairo for a week for unspecified security...   (AP Photo/Frank Augstein, File)

(Newser) – British Airways and Lufthansa both said Saturday they were suspending flights to Cairo for unspecified reasons related to safety and security, reports the AP. The British carrier said it was canceling flights to the Egyptian capital for a week, amid what it calls a "heightened risk of terrorism against aviation." Further, per CNN, "Additional security measures are in place for flights departing from Egypt to the UK." The German airline said normal operations would resume Sunday. Both carriers delivered two-sentence statements via email. British Airways attributed its cancellations to what it called its constant review of security arrangements at all airports, calling them "a precaution to allow for further assessment."

Lufthansa said it was suspending its flights as a precaution, mentioning "safety" but not "security" as its concern. Company spokespeople would not elaborate on what motivated the suspensions. They come as Britain weighs its response to Iran's seizure Friday of a British-flagged oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz and rising tensions stemming from US sanctions' effect on Iran's economy and oil exports. The strait and Cairo are separated by 1,500 miles; CNN notes that a 2015 Russian Metrojet flight exploded over the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt, after a bomb was placed aboard. Lufthansa spokesman Tal Muscal said the company has two flights a day to Cairo, one each from Frankfurt and Munich.

(Read more British Airways stories.)

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