Egyptian truck drivers detained by militia released: Libyan official

Ahram Online, Tuesday 30 Sep 2014

Egyptian truck drivers were detained by a Libyan militia demanding the release of Libyan detained in Egypt

Salloum border crossing
Egyptian trucks at Salloum border crossing (Photo: Al-Ahram)

More than thirty Egyptian trucks and their drivers – who are estimated to be around 70 – detained by Libyan militia have been released a Abdel-Hafiz Mahmoud, member of the local council in Ajdabiya, told the Middle East News Agency on Tuesday.

The truck drivers from Gharbia governorate were detained ten days ago by a militia demanding the release of three Libyans held by Egyptian authorities on charges of drugs and weapon smuggling.

The local sheikhs and elders of the city intervened to guarantee the Egyptian drivers' release, said Mahmoud.

In August, the Egyptian authorities re-opened the Salloum border crossing to allow the movement of goods via Egyptian truck drivers.

Libyan authorities demanded Egyptian drivers sign statements saying they were responsible for their own safety and the safety of their goods if they ventured beyond the Libyan city of Tobruk which is close to the Egyptian border.

The warnings of the Libyan authorities came after several cases of abduction and murder of Egyptian workers in Libya several months ago as well the deteriorating security situation across the country as a whole.

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