Tour operators believe Hurghada knife attacks will have drive down tourism
Several tour operators believe Friday’s knife attacks in Hurghada will have negative repercussions on Egypt’s tourism industry, Al Shorouk reports. Some tourists staying at the hotels where the attacks took place have reportedly requested to leave, says Ali Okda, CEO of German tour operator FIT’s subsidiary Meeting Point. Hossam El Shaer, the president of Thomas Cook’s local agent, Bright Sky, said he expects German tourism in particular will take a hit. He denied, however, that any of his agency’s bookings have been canceled, telling Al Mal that it may be too early to properly gauge the international reaction.
Meanwhile, Egypt’s State Information Service (SIS) issued a statement yesterday saying that the motives behind the knife attack have not yet been determined. SIS asserts that “the assailant is still being questioned by the investigation authorities … the authorities have not yet identified the nature of the attack and motives behind it.” The government’s PR arm also said that the English translation of the statement issued immediately after the attack “contained an error, falsely indicating that the attack is ‘a terrorist act,’ and the same error was in the statement French translation.” SIS says it fired the two freelance translators who prepared the statements.