Middle Eastern Countries Face Tourism Challenge Following Terrorist Attacks

Istanbul’s nightclub shooting that killed 39 people and injured 69 others had the United Arab Emirates, New Zealand, Britain and the United States to issue travel warnings discouraging travel into the country. Islamic militant group Islamic State admitted the attack and hinted the nightclub attacker in Istanbul was trained in Syrian guerrilla warfare.

As Turkish authorities are on a hunt for the attacker, the tourism sector of Turkey continues to suffer. Some travellers said they feel “nrevous” and scared because despite people wanting to have fun and celebrate holidays such as New Years Eve, remaining vigilant defeats the festive atmosphere. 0According to official data, Turkey’s tourism sector was down by a third of its revenue in the first nine months of 2016.

Egypt is also struggling with its own tourism. Despite its UNESCO heritage sites, the shaky economy and ensuing civilian unrest, Egypt is struggling to raise up its tourism sector. According to Egyptian archaeologist and former antiquities minister Zahi Hawass, the country’s antiquities and heritage sites needs about 38,000 employees to ensure the heritage sites are well-cared for.

The Egyptian revolution of 2011 had seen an almost-collapse of the industry. In January 2011, Egypt had practiced its right to civil disobedience, leaving the 15 million tourists into the country in 2010 dropping to 6.3 million in 2015. The lack of funding from tourism resulted into the poor maintenance of the heritage site.

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