Planeload of Egyptians fleeing Libya arrives in Cairo

Ahram Online, Friday 1 Aug 2014

Egypt government organises planes to rescue Egyptians stranded in Tunisia after fleeing violence in Libya

Egyptians cross from Libya to Egypt through the Saloum land port gate on Tuesday, Feb. 22, 2011. (Photo: AP)

A plane transporting 320 Egyptians fleeing Libya arrived in Cairo early Friday, MENA state news agency reported.

Egypt is currently facilitating the departure of Egyptians as security in the country continues to deteriorate.

The plane was the second carrying Egyptians to leave Tunisia’s Djerba airport. The first planeload of Egyptians from Libya arrived in Cairo on late Thursday carrying 319 passengers.

Further planes have also been sent to Djerba to transport Egyptian workers who have fled Libya.

The International Organisation for Migration estimates that 330,000 to 1.5 million Egyptians worked in Libya up until the ongoing unrest that began following the NATO-backed uprising that toppled Gaddafi in 2011. The number of Egyptian expats has dwindled since, although it is not clear how many Egyptians remain in the country.

Libya has been embroiled in turmoil since the ouster of longtime autocrat Muammar Gaddafi and the increasing power of militias. An ongoing fight between rival militias for more than two weeks over control of the capital’s international airport has killed dozens and injured hundreds.

At least 110 have been killed in the capital since the latest bout of violence began two weeks ago, leading to the cancellation of most international flights.

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