Dozens of Egyptian fisherman who had been detained in Sudan for allegedly trespassing in Sudanese waters were released late on Wednesday, an Egyptian foreign ministry statement said.
Sudanese president Omar Al-Bashir, who will be in Egypt on Thursday to attend the inauguration of the Suez Canal's new extension, issued a release order for the 101 fishermen, who had been detained since April.
According to the statement, El-Sisi also sent a plane to transport the fishermen from the city of Port Sudan on the Red Sea coast to Egypt early on Thursday.
Shortly after Bashir's order, President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi issued a release order for 44 Sudanese prisoners in Egypt, according to state news agency MENA. The Sudanese nationals been detained for allegedly crossing borders illegally, and will be sent back to Sudan on an Egyptian plane.
The Sudanese decision comes following intense negotiations between the Egyptian and Sudanese governments over the fate of the fishermen in the past few weeks.
In April, 108 Egyptian fishermen were arrested in Sudan on their way to Eritrean waters and detained in Port Sudan. Seven were later released, including six minors and an elderly man.
The remaining 101 fisherman, who were released Wednesday, had been put on trial in Sudan for trespassing on Sudanese waters.
Families of the detained fishermen, who come mainly from Matariya in the Nile Delta governorate of Daqahlia, staged protests to demand the Egyptian authorities press for the fishermen’s release.