Concern for hundreds of Czech holiday makers in Egypt

Photo: CTK

Reports of looting and violence in Egypt have evoked concern for the hundreds of Czechs currently in the country. According to available information there are now over 1,000 Czech holiday makers in the country’s popular Red Sea resorts and dozens more travelling on their own who are difficult to trace. Earlier today Radio Prague contacted the Czech ambassador to Egypt, Jiří Slavík, for an update on the security situation.

Photo: CTK
“We are continuingly monitoring the situation and I now consider it to be stabilized. There are clashes, but they are individual occurrences and most are caused by criminals who trespass on private property and loot. They have nothing in common with the peaceful demonstrators who want to change the regime.”

We know there are several hundred tourists in the country, mostly in the popular Red Sea resorts, do we know if they are safe and is there looting in this area?

“Well, first I would like to dispel concern and to confirm that, according to the information we have, all Czech citizens in Egypt should be safe. Last night we had dozens of calls from people –most of them from Hurgada – asking if they should leave the country and we told them that the security situation is now under control so it depends on travel agencies if they will be able to reschedule their charter flights. Then there is another group of tourists who are travelling on their own in Cairo and the surrounding vicinity. They want to get on a Czech Airlines flight as soon as possible and there is one due in Cairo shortly and its scheduled departure for Prague is at 3pm this afternoon. I think the next Czech Airlines flight out of Cairo is on Thursday. So those are the main concerns of our citizens.”

Passengers stranded by the curfew and thus prevented from entering the Egyptian capital sleep at Cairo airport,  photo: CTK
And would you be able to get people out of the country fast should the situation worsen – do you have any kind of crisis plan?

“Yes, we have a detailed crisis plan –and we have not yet reached the point of evacuation – we try to stick to this plan and to do things step by step in close coordination with our EU partners here in Cairo and the Czech Foreign Ministry in Prague.”