Update: Two Egyptians die of thirst in Libya

Joel Gulhane
2 Min Read

The bodies of two Egyptian citizens have been found in Libya and are confirmed to have died of thirst, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Another Egyptian was found alive and identified the bodies of the deceased.

Helicopters were dispatched over the region of Tobruk in eastern Libya to search for approximately 100 Egyptians who were thought to have gone missing south of the Tobruk-Ajdabiya road, official ministry spokesman Badr Abdelatty said on Tuesday.

Abdelatty confirmed that the Egyptian citizen who was found on Monday is “Bashar Abdel Samie Attia Hassan, born in 1991 in the governorate of Minya.”

The ministry is following up on the situation “hour by hour”, said the spokesman, adding that the Libyan authorities had launched three helicopter searches near the border including an area indicated to authorities by a camel herder who was heading towards a border crossing 350km south of the Musaid-El Salloum Crossing.

The Egyptian consulate in Benghazi was not available for comment on the issue.

Earlier in October dozens of Egyptian drivers were abducted near the eastern city of Ajdabiya, and were later freed following a joint effort by the Libyan and Egyptian authorities. A Libyan militia chief claimed to have abducted the drivers.

The Egyptian consulate in Beghazi was not available for comment.

Egyptians have continued to illegally cross into Libya despite warnings from both governments advising them to obtain the correct documentation before travelling.

In April, a foreign ministry official said over 4,000 Egyptians entered Libya illegally this year. Egyptian fishermen also violate Libya’s waters for fishing purposes, due to the shortage of fish in Egypt’s water. In March, over 250 Egyptians were deported by Libyan authorities in a crackdown on illegal migrants.

Also in April, Egypt and Libya signed a military cooperation agreement, which included steps to tackle border security issues.

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Joel Gulhane is a journalist with an interest in Egyptian and regional politics. Follow him on Twitter @jgulhane
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