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Guenther Schmidt(not a XING member)03 Feb 2011, 5:00 pm
BEIJING - All Chinese travelers stranded in Egypt are expected to have been returned to China by Thursday, the start of the Spring Festival, said China's national tourism authorities late Wednesday.
As of the Spring Festival Eve, most of the Chinese tourists stranded in Egypt due to the country's nation-wide protests had been flown back to China by chartered planes, according to a statement released by the National Holiday Office, an inter-ministerial agency led by the National Tourism Administration.
China had sent a total of eight "special commercial flights" to Cairo, Luxor and Hurghada to bring back Chinese citizens stranded in these cities, and six of the planes had returned, carrying 1,371 people, including those from Hong Kong, according to the Chinese Foreign Ministry.
The Spring Festival is the Chinese lunar New Year, a time for family reunions, according to Chinese tradition.
The National Holiday Office has also issued warnings about traveling to Australia, as tropical cyclone Yasi was expected to make landfall in northeast Queensland late Wednesday local time.