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Russia, Egypt Will Join Forces to Find Sinai Crash Culprits

An Egyptian army soldier stands guard near debris from a Russian airliner which crashed at the Hassana area in Arish city, north Egypt, Nov. 1, 2015.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi agreed to enforce collaboration on finding criminals responsible for the downing of a Russian civilian aircraft over Egypt's Sinai Peninsula, the official website of the Kremlin said Wednesday in an online statement.

The leaders had a phone conversation on Wednesday, during which they agreed to coordinate their countries' special law enforcement services in order to guarantee maximum security of air communication between Russia and Egypt — air traffic between the two countries is currently suspended.

“Vladimir Putin informed his counterpart of a military build-up against extremist groups in Syria, which includes long-range aviation and the Russian navy task force. The Egyptian president voiced his support of Russia's actions,” the statement said.

Metrojet flight 9268 from Sharm El Sheikh to St. Petersburg crashed in the Sinai Peninsula on Oct. 31. On Tuesday, the Russian Federal Security Service announced that the downing was caused by an improvised explosive device placed aboard the aircraft, and deemed it a terrorist act, Responsibility for the attack has been claimed by the Islamic State terrorist organization.

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