The Egyptian tourist and antiquities police in South Sinai has closed Taba Border Crossing on Friday in anticipation of a terrorist attack at the crossing on Yom Kippur, the holiest day celebrated by Jews. The Israeli closed the crossing from their side of the border as well.
The crossing had been closed to Israeli nationals in late September for the first time since the Egypt-Israeli peace treaty was signed over 30 years ago. The reason for that closure was also fear of terrorist attack.
In past years, the Israeli side has typically closed the crossing on Yom Kippur, even without anticipation of a terrorist attack. Sharif Baha Eddin, marketing director of a major hotel in the Egyptian border town of Taba, said that tourism in Taba typically decreases during this time.
Egypt's inbound tourism through Taba is limited to Israelis and foreign nationals travelling among Jordan, Israel and Egypt.
Baha Eddin stressed that Israel's warnings to its citizens also negatively affected tourism in Taba. Hotel occupancy rates currently hover between 50 and 55 percent, a low rate in comparison with the same time last year.
Translated from the Arabic Edition