HUFFINGTON POST
02/24/2016 09:39 am ET

Egypt's Sisi Says Russian Airliner Was Downed By Terrorists

This is the first official Egyptian indication that the plane was deliberately downed.
For the first time, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said the Russian airliner that crashed on Oct. 31, 2015 was
KHALED DESOUKI/AFP/Getty Images
For the first time, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said the Russian airliner that crashed on Oct. 31, 2015 was brought down by terrorists.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said on Wednesday that the Russian plane that crashed in Sinai last year was downed by terrorists seeking to damage Egypt's tourism industry and relations with Moscow.

"Has terrorism ended, no it has not but it will if we unite. Whoever downed the Russian plane, what did he mean? He meant to hit tourism, and to hit relations with Russia," Sisi said in a televised speech.

The comments were the first official Egyptian indication that the plane was deliberately downed.

Sisi, pictured here at an event in 2015, claimed terrorists downed the plane to hurt Egypt's tourism industry and relations w
Abraham Caro Marin/Associated Press
Sisi, pictured here at an event in 2015, claimed terrorists downed the plane to hurt Egypt's tourism industry and relations with Moscow.

Moscow stopped all civilian flights to Egypt, a popular destination for Russian tourists, after a Russian airplane crashed in Sinai on Oct. 31 killing all 224 people on board.

Russia said a bomb brought down the flight and Islamic State said it smuggled the explosive aboard concealed in a soft drink can. But an Egyptian-led investigation had said it has yet to find evidence of foul play.

The official Egyptian confirmation that a bomb brought down the Airbus A321 could potentially expose Egypt to compensation payments to the families of the victims.

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