31 January 2011, 20:12

Russian tourists to stay in Egypt, students to be evacuated

Russian tourists to stay in Egypt, students to be evacuated

Amid the current unrest in Cairo and other big cities of Egypt the situation at the country’s sea resorts remains stable and quiet. The Association of Tour Operators of Russia (ATOR) has decided not to evacuate Russian tourists, who are currently spending their holidays there.

Amid the current unrest in Cairo and other big cities of Egypt the situation at the country’s sea resorts remains stable and quiet. The Association of Tour Operators of Russia (ATOR) has decided not to evacuate Russian tourists, who are currently spending their holidays there. At the same time Russia’s Emergency and Foreign ministries are taking measures to evacuate 150 students who are blocked in a dormitory at Cairo University.

At a meeting on Monday officials from the Emergency and Tourism ministries decided not to evacuate tourists from the Egyptian resorts. We hear from the executive director of the Association of Tour Operators of Russia (ATOR) Maya Lomidze.

All our tourists are either in Sharm-El-Sheikh or in Hurghada, where nothing is happening, to disturb peace and harm our tourists. Everything is quiet. Troops have been brought in but not because the situation is unstable but in order to prevent maraud, which earlier took place.

Eva Vatutina, the head of Russia’s Our Traditions Educational Centre located in Hurghada told us about the situation at this resort:

"Everything is quiet in Hurghada. Everybody’s working, our school is open as usual, shops are open, tourists are walking around quite happy. There has been no marauding. There have been three armored infantry vehicles near the bank’s building for three days though. Police have appeared in the streets. Also volunteers’ units were formed, which are patrolling the streets in the evenings."

On Monday, some European travel agencies began to evacuate their clients from Egypt. Maya Lomidze has commented on this as follows:

:As we know, they are evacuating foreigners from the Aswan province, from Suez and Cairo. Indeed, European travel agencies have charter flights to these regions but we don’t."

Meanwhile, the situation in Cairo is really worrisome. The spokesman of Bashkortostan’s president Artyom Valiyev told reporters that 150 students from Russia, including more than 50 people from the republics of Bashkortostan and Tatarstan, and the rest from the regions of Orenburg and Chelyabinsk are now blocked on the fourth floor of Cairo university’s student residence. Three floors of the building have been destroyed by ravaging marauders. Valiyev stressed that there are young families among the students and probably small children too. At the moment, the Emergency and Foreign Ministries are working out a plan for evacuating the students from the building.

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