Sudan has ordered the release 101 Egyptian fishermen who had been detained for allegedly trespassing in Sudanese territorial waters, an Egyptian fishermen’s syndicate leader told Ahram Online on Thursday.
Nesim Badr El-Deen, head of the fishermen’s syndicate in Matariya, Daqahliya governorate, said the men were expected to return home soon.
One hundred and eight Egyptian fishermen, who were bound for Eritrea, were arrested in April and detained in Port Sudan city on the Red Sea coast. However, seven of those – six minors and an elderly man – were later released.
The rest were put on trial.
Families of the detained fishermen, mainly from the Nile Delta governorate of Daqahliya, staged protests to demand the authorities press for the fishermen’s release. Many of the men are the main providers for their families.
Meanwhile, Sudanese media reported that authorities had demanded that Egypt release 24 Sudanese miners who had reportedly crossed the border and were believed to be held in prisons in southern Egypt’s El-Wadi El-Gedid and Aswan.
However, there was no official confirmation on the issue.
In September 2012, Sudan released a number of Egyptian fishermen in exchange for miners held in Egypt in a similar incident.
The foreign ministry issued several statements in 2015 warning fishermen of illegal trespassing in foreign waters and calling on them to respect other states’ sovereignty.