By Yasmin Sameh
Sixty Egyptians who were detained in Libya under suspicion of being in the country illegally on Friday have been released after the two countries’ foreign ministries negotiated an agreement, according to a Saturday statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Twenty-one of the detainees possessed proper documentation to stay in Libya, while the remaining 39 Egyptians, most of whom wish to stay in Libya where they have jobs and homes, were given a grace period to legalise their residency papers, said Badr Abdelatty, the ministry’s spokesman.
The staff from the Egyptian consulate in Libya visited the detainees before they were released to check that they were being treated well, according to the statement.
Both Libya and Egypt, which share a border, have previously signed agreements to ensure the security and safety of their borders, but immigrants seeking work opportunities continue to flow between the two countries without completing proper documentation.