The Tourism Ministry canceled the licenses of two hotels in Sharm el-Sheikh Tuesday, after a ministry spokesperson admitted that a British tourist had been raped in her room by a security guard.
The two hotels have been identified as the Hilton Sharks Bay resort and the Sharm Holiday Hotel, according to state-owned news agency MENA.
A media relations manager at the Hilton’s PR agency told Mada Masr that “the hotel has been alerted than an alleged serious incident took place in the hotel. The hotel immediately began an internal investigation.”
“We are cooperating with the local authorities as the well-being, safety and security of our guests and team members are of paramount importance to us,” the hotel’s official statement claimed.
Tourism Minister Hisham Zaazou said that the hotels had not taken the necessary steps to manage their resorts properly.
According to MENA, the ministry also requested the public prosecutor take the event seriously in order to deter sexual violence.
On Sunday’s episode of CBC talk show “Hona al-A’sema,” hosted by Lamees al-Hadidi, ministry spokesperson Rasha Azayzi confirmed that a British tourist had been raped in her room after a report in British newspaper The Daily Mail.
Azayzi could not be reached for comment on Tuesday.
“Measures in cases like these may extend to closing down the hotel altogether,” Azayzi had said on the program.
MENA reported that the ministry cited a 1973 law to buttress its authority to cancel hotel licenses for “facilities that violate public morality or damage the country’s reputation or security.”
The tourism industry has been hardest hit by the political instability and lack of security in Egypt since 2011.
In 2010 tourist industry revenues reached US$12.5 billion, but dropped to just $5.9 billion last year.