People's Daily's anti-American rant backfires as Chinese teen trashes ancient Egyptian temple

A Nanjing teenager scratched the words 'Ding Jinhao was here' in Chinese characters on a 35-century-old sculpture at the Temple of Luxor in Egypt. Photo: AP

A Nanjing teenager's act of vandalism - he scratched the words "Ding Jinhao was here" in Chinese characters on a 35-century-old sculpture - struck a raw nerve in a in a country so proud of its ancient civilisation. And, embarrassingly, it followed an astonishing attack by the Communist Party mouthpiece that labelled Americans untrustworthy and lacking in integrity.

Sunday, 2 June, 2013, 3:59am 2 comments

'I was here' Chinese carving on ancient Egyptian wall is decried on Weibo

The inscription at Luxor Temple in Luxor, Egypt. Photo: SCMP Pictures

“Ding Jinhao visited this place,” a not-so-mysterious carving reads on a wall of Egypt's fabled Luxor Temple.

28 May 2013 - 8:31am 7 comments

Hong Kong must stand up to Egypt over probe into balloon crash

The site where a hot air balloon exploded and plunged to earth during a sunrise flight at Egypt's ancient temple city of Luxor, killing several Hong Kong tourists. Photo: Sam Tsang

Nine Hong Kong citizens died needlessly in the Luxor balloon crash, but Egyptian authorities say they don't need any foreign representative involved in their probe. This is worse than a snub; it's a blatant violation of international protocol and a lack of plain human decency.

8 Mar 2013 - 3:48am 7 comments

Talking points

Premier Wen Jiabao.

NPC begins with work report

5 Mar 2013 - 6:36am

Egypt hot-air balloon crash was 'hell', says Scottish survivor

Victims’ relatives arrive at Cairo airport yesterday. Photo: Sam Tsang

The only holidaymaker who survived last week's hot-air balloon disaster in Egypt that left nine Hongkongers dead has described the swift, uncontrolled ignition that sparked the tragedy as "hell".

5 Mar 2013 - 4:53am

Bodies of last Hong Kong balloon victims identified through DNA

Relatives of Hong Kong victims in the balloon explosion mourn at the site of the accident in Egypt's Luxor, March 2, 2013. Photo: Xinhua

The Government Laboratory received the body samples after 10pm on Saturday and announced confirmation of the victims' identities in Cairo at 5pm Hong Kong time yesterday - just hours after relatives paid a tearful pilgrimage to Luxor.

4 Mar 2013 - 8:35am

Balloon pilot was not to blame for disaster in Egypt, say colleagues

Ahmed Hussein, a pilot with Magic Horizon Balloons, in one of the baskets at the firm's base in Luxor - all balloons have been grounded during an inquiry. Photo: Sam Tsang

Egyptian balloon pilots suspect the crash was caused by faulty hardware rather than human error on the part of Moman Mourad, the 28-year-old Sky Cruise pilot who jumped from the balloon and suffered severe burns.

4 Mar 2013 - 8:37am 1 comment

Egyptian balloon operators could be back in business this week

Luxor governor Ezzat Saad. Photo: Xinhua

Operators of hot-air balloons in Luxor may restart their trips this week despite ongoing investigations into the accident that killed nine Hongkongers and 10 other tourists on Tuesday.

3 Mar 2013 - 5:14am

Relatives identify Luxor crash victims

People attend a memorial at the site of a hot air balloon crash in Luxor. Photo: AP

Six of the nine Hong Kong victims in the hot-air balloon crash in Luxor have been identified by relatives but the remaining three are too badly disfigured and will need forensic or DNA tests.

2 Mar 2013 - 5:22am

Governor of Luxor apologises for deadly balloon tragedy

The site where the burning balloon plunged to earth. The owner of the land says he wants a memorial for the victims. Photo: Sam Tsang

The governor of the Egyptian city of Luxor and the operator of the hot-air balloon that exploded and killed 19 tourists have apologised for the tragedy. Governor Ezzat Saad also told local media he was willing to introduce tougher safety measures for balloons if an investigation indicated a need.

2 Mar 2013 - 5:15am

Relatives identify Hong Kong balloon crash victims in Egypt

Family members of the victims in the Egypt balloon accident arrives at a hospital in Cairo. Photo: SCMP

Six of the nine Hong Kong victims of the Luxor balloon crash have been identified by their relatives, a Hong Kong police officer said in Cairo on Friday.

3 Mar 2013 - 8:35pm

Hong Kong police to advise in Luxor balloon tragedy probe

A sequence of pictures taken from a YouTube video of an October, 2011, Sky Cruise balloon crash. The incident was filmed by a tourist from a nearby hotel and it has been claimed the balloon narrowly missed colliding with a ship during the ill-fated flight. Photo: SCMP

Hong Kong police have been given an advisory role in Egypt's investigation into the deadly hot-air balloon crash in Luxor that killed 19 tourists, including nine Hongkongers. The head of the investigation, Walid el-Moqadem, told Associated Press yesterday that while Hong Kong, would not be sending investigators at present, they had been granted an advisory role - along with Britain, Japan and Hungary. They would also be kept appraised of his progress through e-mails.

1 Mar 2013 - 5:15am

Hong Kong forensic experts to examine bodies of Egypt balloon accident victims

Hong Kong immigration officers talk to the press before travelling to Egypt to assist the families of the victims in the hot-air balloon accident. Photo: Sam Tsang

Hong Kong’s forensic experts will soon examine the bodies of nine Hong Kong tourists who died in a hot-air balloon accident earlier this week.

The experts – including a forensic pathologist and a specialist in the identification of bodies – are part of a seven-member team who arrived in Egypt on Thursday to join another team of government officers to help the victim’s families.

28 Feb 2013 - 6:55pm

Egypt blaze tragedy balloon 'was in appalling condition'

Luxor’s governor Ezzat Saad and Japanese travel agent Okumura Hatsuko pay their respects to the dead. Photo: AP

Relatives of the Hong Kong victims - five women and four men aged 33 to 62 from three families - arrived in the Egyptian capital late last night along with officers from the Immigration Department, who will be joined by a fresh team sent yesterday, including a senior forensic pathologist and a specialist to help identify the bodies.

28 Feb 2013 - 11:41am 2 comments

Team sent to help Egypt balloon crash relatives

Chinese Ambassador to Egypt Song Aiguo (centre) is escorted by an unidentified immigration official from Hong Kong (left) as they arrive at Cairo International Airport on Wednesday. Photo: AFP

Hong Kong will send a pathologist to Egypt to help the families of the victims of the balloon crash, the Health Department said on Wednesday. Nine Hong Kong tourists, who each paid US$190 (HK$1,474) per person for the sightseeing trip, were killed in the horrible balloon crash in Luxor on Tuesday.

28 Feb 2013 - 12:03am