In Brief

Egypt celebrates new Suez Canal with stamp of Panama Canal

Social media users proved the embarrassing gaffe was real after officials insisted the stamps were 'fakes'

stamp.jpg

The Egyptian Minister of Communications, Atef Helmy, has halted the production of stamps to commemorate the Suez Canal extension after discovering they mistakenly feature an image of the wrong waterway – the Panama Canal.

Egyptian authorities finally accepted responsibility for the mistake, after previously denying the allegations.

"This stamp is fake; our official postage stamps haven’t been released yet," a member of the Postal Authority told the Cairo Post. "This must be an organized plan to attack and criticize the New Suez Canal, a huge and national project."

But social media users were quick to point out that the stamps were authentic and the photos were indeed wrong.

The 145-year old Suez Canal is one of the world's most historic trading routes and serves as a vital transportation link between Europe and Asia.

It is a source of national pride to most Egyptians as well as a major source of income for the government, with annual revenues exceeding £3 billion a year. Plans for the extension were unveiled last month and will allow ships to travel in both directions in some parts of the canal.

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