Delays see Sharm repatriation extended into next week

Delays see Sharm repatriation extended into next week

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Holidaymakers face another weekend stuck in Sharm el-Sheikh due to the lengthy process of organising rescue flights amid heightened security.

This comes despite foreign secretary Philip Hammond expecting that stranding British holidaymakers would be home by the end of this week.    

Monarch admitted that its last flight out of Sharm el-Sheikh is not planned until next Tuesday with other departures confirmed for today, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The company said: “Monarch is continuing to work closely with the Department for Transport, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and local authorities to get customers back to the UK as quickly as possible.

“We recognise this is a very challenging situation for our customers in Sharm el-Sheikh and although outside of our control we apologise for the inconvenience.”

EasyJet passengers continue to face delays of up to three days with the airline now scheduling nine flights to operate out of Sharm el-Sheikh on Saturday – four to Gatwick, three to Luton, one to Manchester and one to Milan.

Thomas Cook is to run its last rescue flight for British holidaymakers stuck in Sharm el-Sheikh tomorrow (Friday). The operator plans a further departure today to Manchester and its final flight tomorrow to Gatwick.

Thomson ran four flights out yesterday to Bristol, Cardiff, Manchester and Newcastle.

“We continue to work with the UK government to try and finalise our flying programme for the following days and we will update accordingly when further information becomes available,” Thomson said.

All holiday programmes to the destination have been suspended until at least November 25 with people booked to Sharm el-Sheikh offered alternative holidays.

Thousands of holidaymakers remain in the resort following the decision to cut air links and heighten security measures following the Russian Metrojet crash on October 32 that killed 224 people on board. 

Speaking in Washington yesterday, the Times reported Hammond as saying that the government had insisted on “some very significant increased security requirements” to ensure the safety of passengers.
“That has caused some delays and sort of backups in what is quite a small airport operating quite close to its capacity.
“There have been more Russian flights going out than flights to the UK. Russia has far more people in the resort than the UK does and the Russians, as far as I’m aware, have not insisted on the additional security measures that we have imposed.
“By the end of this week, we expect to have cleared the backlog. So in the circumstances, the repatriation is going smoothly.”


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