Egypt's navy foils illegal migration attempts by 230 people in August

Ahram Online , Tuesday 29 Aug 2017

army spokesman
Egyptian Armed Forces Spokesperson Tamer El-Refai (Photo courtesy of army's Facebook page)

Egypt's navy has foiled illegal emigration attempts by 230 individuals over the past two weeks, Egypt's military spokesman said in a statement on Tuesday.

Spokesman Tamer El-Refai said the navy was able to thwart multiple attempts during the period from 10 to 26 August.

The attempts were made by people of various nationalities, the statement said.

El-Refai also announced the seizure by Egypt's border guards of weapons and ammunition of various types, as well as 3,500 kg of narcotics.

Large numbers of people seek to migrate illegally from Egypt each year, often travelling first to Libya and then onward to Europe across the Mediterranean. Human-trafficking gangs operate from Libya, charging migrants large sums of money to make the perilous journey.

Those seeking to travel to Egypt include both refugees and economic migrants seeking work and better living conditions. Hundreds have been arrested in Egypt for attempting to migrate illegally.

Cairo has increasingly focused on the migration issue in recent years, working with European nations to tackle the problem.

Following a migrant boat disaster in September 2016 that killed hundreds of people, a law was passed criminalizing unauthorized migration and human trafficking.

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