Released Egyptian sailors return home from Yemen

Ahram Online , Sunday 8 May 2022

Twenty Egyptian sailors, who were released earlier this month after being held by Yemen’s Houthis for about a month over charges of trespassing into Yemeni territorial waters, have arrived back home.

Suez Canal
A boat is seen on a dusty weather in Suez near the Suez Canal, Egypt March 24, 2021. REUTERS

 

The sailors arrived in Suez City onboard their fishing boat, the Nour El-Behar, days after they were released due to intervention by Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, according to local reports.

Arriving back home, the sailors thanked El-Sisi, adding that they fully trusted the government’s ability to end their tragedy.

The families of the 20 sailors,  who started their journey from the Egyptian Red Sea Port of Berenice on 18 March, lost touch with them in late March when they were arrested by Houthis.

The Houthis issued a ruling sentencing the sailors to six months, seizing their boat, and fining them $25,000, according to reports.

However, the ruling was canceled following the Egyptian government’s intervention.

In February 2020, 32 Egyptian fishermen returned home after being detained by the Houthis for weeks, reportedly after having breached Yemeni territorial waters.

Early in 2021, Egypt’s emigration ministry urged fishermen to avoid other countries’ territorial waters after Tunisia seized a number of Egyptian fishing boats over illegal fishing.

The Egyptian government is working to ensure that the country’s fishermen do not enter the territorial waters of other countries out of a respect for international law and a keenness to protect their lives, the ministry added.

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