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Israeli man drowns in Sinai during family vacation with his wife and 2 kids

Foreign Ministry says it is working to bring 57-year-old’s remains back to Israel after incident in Nuweiba

Illustrative. A resort in the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt, on October 4, 2021 (Yossi Aloni/ Flash90)
Illustrative. A resort in the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt, on October 4, 2021 (Yossi Aloni/ Flash90)

An Israeli man drowned in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement Monday.

The man’s family was informed of the incident, the ministry said, but offered no details of what led to the tragedy.

The man’s wife and their two children were still in Nuweiba in eastern Sinai, where they had been on vacation.

The man, said to be aged 57, was taken to a local hospital where he was declared dead, according to Hebrew media reports.

The Kan public broadcaster reported that the man’s wife had been present when he drowned. A representative from the ZAKA emergency service traveled to Egypt to be with the family, according to the report.

The Foreign Ministry said its department for Israelis abroad was working to bring the man’s remains back to Israel as soon as possible.

In June, Israeli woman Orit Peled drowned while on vacation in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, on the southern tip of the Egyptian peninsula, a popular tourist destination for Israelis.

Speaking with Hebrew media, Orit’s husband Itzik said at the time that she had an epileptic seizure while diving, charging that the local lifeguards did not have sufficient knowledge of CPR to save her life.

Then in July, two Israelis were killed and five injured, when a taxi van carrying youth counselors returning from a beachside vacation in Sinai smashed into another car while speeding toward the Taba border crossing.

One of those injured in the crash later said that local medics initially refused to treat the Israelis at the scene and demanded they pay upfront for an ambulance to transfer them to Israel.

According to Hebrew media reports at the time, Israel Defense Forces helicopters were initially sent to assist in bringing the injured to hospitals in Israel. However, Cairo would not allow the helicopters to land inside Egypt, delaying the Israelis’ return by several hours.

In April, Israel’s Arkia airline offered a new direct flight from Tel Aviv to Sharm el-Sheikh, prompting a large uptick in Israeli tourism to the peninsula.

This year, Israel’s National Security Council scaled back its travel warning for parts of the Sinai Peninsula for the first time in more than a decade.

Just before the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020, travel to Sinai from Israel reached record heights. In October 2019, during the Jewish holiday season when many Israelis have time off from work and school, more than 150,000 Israelis visited Sinai.

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