Published on Friday, January 24, 2014

Deadly bomb blasts in Cairo

Four people have been killed and more than 50 injured in a car bomb in Cairo.

The bomb exploded outside Cairo's police headquarters and its blast was felt across the capital.

According to BBC reports, there was a second blast a couple of hours later in another part of Cairo, which killed at least one person and wounded 15.

Tomorrow marks the third anniversary of the start of the 2011 uprising.

The Foreign Office had issued a warning to travellers earlier this week that there could be protests and disruption to travel around the country in the days before and after the anniversary.

"You are advised to take particular care in the vicinity of government buildings, and to avoid all demonstrations and large gatherings. Before embarking on a journey seek information about any disruptions to your route and consider your travel plans carefully," it said.

Today, it added: "You should exercise caution in Cairo particularly near Government buildings, and where possible minimise travel around the city for the time being."

Since the Foreign Office lifted its ban on Cairo Great Cairo, Giza and the Giza Pyramids in November, Egypt operators have been busy reinstating their programmes.

On the Go Tours currently has 33 clients in Cairo and general manager Pru Goudie said they are all safe.

"Certainly safety is of the upmost importance, but unless the Foreign Office changes its advice and reinstates a ban, we will continue to send our clients there," she said.

"Our phone certainly hasn't been ringing this morning with people asking to cancel."

Goudie said business to Egypt has picked up since December and forward bookings are strong, but she said levels are still nowhere near as high as before 2011.

"At this time of year, which is always popular because the temperatures aren't fierce, we would have had over 100 clients there," she explained.

"But there has definitely been a change in attitude among our customers. They know there might be some unrest in isolated areas, but they still want to go. Even when the ban was in place, we had calls from clients wanting to go."

There have been violent clashes in Cairo since last July, resulting in a large number of deaths, most of them in Cairo and Alexandria.

More than 50 were killed in political protests across the country in October and earlier this month, on January 3, there there were at least 12 deaths during protests in Cairo, Alexandria, Fayoum and Ismailia.

Yesterday masked gunmen on motorbikes shot five Egyptian police officers at a checkpoint in Beni Suef province, south of Cairo.


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  • Egypt IS safe

    I am so glad some international operators are keen about their work and investigate the actual situation in Egypt. Thank you for not allowing some disturbances in minor areas in the whole country to affect the tourism to other very safe places in Egypt. It is however very sad that reputable agencies allow themselves to fall into the effect of exaggerated negative propaganda about the safety in Egypt. This behavior actually raises so many questions given that there has never been an incident where a tourist had been disturbed during his/her trip ever since the Arab Spring.

    By Ayah Tarek, Thursday, February 6, 2014

  • Of course it is about profit......

    I would not want to go there. Nor would I dare recommend it. Way too risky these days, it only takes one fanatic to ruin your whole day.

    By Paul Davis, Friday, January 24, 2014

  • Am I missing something here?

    I'm wondering what point I'm missing here with all of the positive comments coming from various tour operators stating it 's safe and okay for tourists to visit Egypt? With so many people dead because of bomb blasts, and even masked gunmen on motorcycles shooting people, I'm not understanding how anyone could make such misleading statements, or is it all about profit? I use to take groups to Egypt until the unrest started. Since that time, we have had zero requests for travel to this area of the world most likely because there are many other places to visit that are safe. If the Foreign Office has issued warnings to all travellers of the dangers, that's good enough for me and I would encourage tour operators who saying things such as "we will continue to send our clients to Egypt" to rethink what you are saying and maybe look out for their safety rather than your pocketbook.

    By Ron Oster, Friday, January 24, 2014

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