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20151107
A British plane carrying 189 passengers came 'within 1,000ft' of a rocket as it approached Sharm El Sheikh, it emerged last night.

The Thomson flight from London Stansted only took evasive action after the pilot spotted the missile speeding through the air. The jet landed safely, and holidaymakers were not told they had been seconds from disaster.

The missile that nearly struck the Thomson jet was also spotted by another of the carrier's planes as it approached Sharm El Sheikh, the source said.

'The crew were told the rocket was from an Egyptian military exercise, but with what has happened there is a lot of fear,' they added. 'The incident left staff petrified.'

The revelation comes amid claims British jihadists had spoken about an Islamic State 'mole' at Sharm el-Sheikh airport minutes after a Metrojet plane crashed in Sinai, killing all 224 on board.

Thomson initially declined to comment but in a comment late last night said: 'Thomson Airways can confirm that an event was reported by the crew of flight TOM 476 on 23rd August 2015.

'Upon landing into Sharm el-Sheikh, an initial assessment was conducted and the event was immediately reported to the UK Department for Transport (DfT) in line with established protocol.

'The DfT conducted a full investigation in conjunction with other UK Government experts.

'After reviewing the details of the case, the investigation concluded that there was no cause for concern and it was safe to continue our flying programme to Sharm el Sheikh.'

The altitude of its plane and its geographical position at the time it encountered the rocket has not been revealed.

A government spokesman said: 'We investigated the reported incident at the time and concluded that it was not a targeted attack and was likely to be connected to routine exercises being conducted by the Egyptian military in the area at the time.'

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