Thomas Cook removes customers from Egyptian hotel following death of British couple

It is 'unclear' how John and Susan Cooper died, authorities say

Jon Sharman,Tom Barnes
Friday 24 August 2018 08:27 BST
Egyptian hotel evacuated after British couple found dead

Thomas Cook has removed its customers from a hotel in Egypt following the death of a British couple.

John and Susan Cooper, from Burnley, Lancashire, are understood to have died while staying at the Steigenberger Aqua Magic Hotel in the Red Sea resort of Hurghada.

The tour operator said in a statement on Thursday the circumstances surrounding the Coopers’ deaths were still “unclear”, but it had received reports of a “raised level of illness” among guests.

It said it would remove all of its customers from the hotel as a precautionary measure.

Guests are understood to be staying at the hotel overnight on Thursday, before they will be offered the option of alternative accommodation or a flight home on Friday.

“We are deeply saddened by the tragic deaths of two of our customers that were staying in the Steigenberger Aqua Magic Hotel,” a Thomas Cook spokesman said.

“Safety is always our first priority, so as a precautionary measure we have taken a decision to remove all our customers from this hotel.

“While we understand this is upsetting for those on holiday, we believe this is the right thing to do.

“We continue to work closely with the hotel and are supporting the authorities with their investigations.”

The Independent has contacted the Egyptian embassy in London for comment.

A Foreign and Commonwealth Office spokeswoman said: “We are supporting the family of a British couple who died in Hurghada, Egypt, and we are in contact with the local tour operator.”

Thomas Cook advertises Hurghada, a key tourist site for Egypt, as a “cosmopolitan resort” that is “the capital of the Red Sea Riviera, where beautiful beaches, vibrant nightclubs and world-class diving destinations await”.

It was a fishing village before being developed for tourism.

Thomas Cook said it had only audited the Steigenberger Aqua Magic last month, when it received an overall score of 96 per cent from its inspectors.

The company added it would be contacting all holidaymakers due to stay at the hotel in the next four weeks to offer alternative holiday arrangements.

Additional reporting by PA

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