With just hand luggage, British tourists to fly home from Egypt

LONDON (Reuters) - British tourists will fly home from the Egyptian resort of Sharm al-Sheikh on Friday with extra security measures in place after Prime Minister David Cameron said a bomb probably downed a Russian airplane, killing all 224 people on board.

Cameron's decision to ground British flights to and from the airport angered Egypt, which depends on tourism revenue, and drew criticism from the Kremlin, which said it had not been given details of the intelligence behind Britain's move.

"The additional security measures will include permitting passengers to carry hand baggage only and transporting hold luggage separately," a spokeswoman for Cameron's office said.

"We are working with the airlines to ensure there are suitable arrangements in place to reunite passengers with their belongings as soon as possible."

Outbound flights to Sharm al-Sheikh were still suspended and Britain advised against air travel to or from the airport, she said.

Thomas Cook Airlines, easyJet, privately-held Monarch, British Airways and Thomson operate direct flights between Britain and Sharm al-Sheikh. About 20,000 British tourists are believed to be in the area.

A Sinai-based group affiliated with Islamic State, the militants who have seized swathes of Iraq and Syria, has claimed responsibility for the crash, which, if confirmed, would make it the jihadist organization's first attack on civil aviation.

In his first public comments on the disaster, U.S. President Barack Obama said in a radio interview: "There's a possibility that there was a bomb on board. And we're taking that very seriously."

(Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge; Editing by Louise Ireland)