72 detained for attempting to cross into Libya
Ahram Online, , Tuesday 19 May 2015
Libya is a destination for many people from Africa and the Middle East attempting to travel to Europe in search of a better life


Egypt's border police have stopped 72 people, including 24 Sudanese and a Syrian, from illegally crossing into conflict-stricken Libya, state news agency MENA reported.

A report was filed on Monday and it will be presented to the prosecution for investigation.

The Egyptian migrants came from various cities, mostly in Upper Egypt.

They included 11 from Minya, five from Assiut, four from Sohag, and two from Beni Suef, all in Upper Egypt, in addition to nine from Kafr El-Sheikh, eight from Beheira, seven from Dakahliya in the Nile Delta, and one from Alexandria.

Earlier in May, 83 Egyptians, also mainly from the underprivileged area of Upper Egypt, were arrested while trying to cross into Libya.

Libya is a destination for many people from Africa and the Middle East attempting to travel to Europe in search of a better life.

The numbers have continued to rise even after as many as 900 people drowned in April while aboard illegal migration boats in the worst Mediterranean shipwreck, leaving Europe with a crisis to stop the phenomena.

Meanwhile, back in Libya 194 Egyptian workers fled to the Ras Jadir crossing in Tunisia on Monday night to await a plane to bring them from Jerba airport to Cairo, MENA reported.

Over 45,000 Egyptians working in Libya have fled the country to return to Egypt, either flying from Tunisia or by land.

The Egyptian government had called upon Egyptians several times to avoid travelling to Libya due to the dangerous security situation.

Between 330,000 and 1.5 million Egyptians worked in Libya before the civil war broke out following the uprising that toppled Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, according to International Organization for Migration estimates.

Libyan militias have been fighting each other and the government. An internationally recognised parliament is based in Tobruk in the east, while anti-government militias operate from the Libyan capital Tripoli in the west.

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