Twenty six Egyptian fishermen have drowned off the Libyan coast by the city of Khoms, the head of the national fishermen’s syndicate Ahmed Abdou announced on Thursday.
Speaking to Al-Ahram Arabic news website, Abdou said 26 Egyptian fishermen on two fishing boats and the boats’ six Libyan owners drowned off Khoms, one hundred kilometers east of Tripoli, due to extreme weather conditions.
Abdou also said four Egyptian fishermen were saved and have been detained pending investigation in a Khoms prison. One of the survivors has already contacted his family and told them what happened, according to Al-Ahram.
The fishermen are all from the established fishing village of Al-Magzal in Egypt's Kafr El-Sheikh governorate.
Earlier this week Khoms witnessed the drowning of 36 illegal migrants in a boat off its shore.
Ahmed Abdou of the fishermen’s syndicate demanded that president Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi secure the release of the four detained fishermen.
He also called for the government to support the families of the deceased.
Egypt’s foreign ministry is yet to receive official information regarding the accident, its spokesman Ahmed Abou Zeid told Al-Ahram.
“We are investigating the reports to ascertain whether such an accident has taken place,” he said before adding that the foreign ministry is in communication with their Libyan counterparts over the incident.