CAIRO: Egypt said Wednesday it would bar all Boeing 737 MAX aircraft from its airspace following a weekend plane crash in Ethiopia that killed 157 people.
The aviation ministry said it was banning the model from “taking off and landing” at Egyptian airports or “passing through” its airspace.
“The civil aviation authority took this necessary precaution to ensure the safety of passengers,” it said in a statement.
Six Egyptians were among those who died on Sunday when a new Ethiopian Airlines 737 MAX 8 went down minutes into a flight from Addis Ababa to Nairobi, killing all those on board.
Egypt’s foreign ministry is liaising with Ethiopian authorities to repatriate the bodies.
Its ban on the aircraft follows a string of similar measures by countries including Kuwait, Oman and the United Arab Emirates, as well as the EU’s aviation agency.
Other countries including Serbia and New Zealand also banned 737 MAX flights on Wednesday.
The United States has so far resisted following suit.
Egyptian airports received some 30 million passengers in 2017, according to official figures published in January this year.
The ministry said national carrier Egypt Air has no Boeing 737 MAX aircraft among its fleet and no plans to purchase any.
More than 370 aircraft of the model are in service around the world, with nearly 5,000 on order. —AFP