The Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on Sunday that over 4,000 Egyptians have entered Libya illegally this year.
Spokesperson for the ministry Amr Roshdy published a statement on the ministry’s official Facebook page. He reported that 4,018 Egyptian entered Libya illegally this year and called on Egyptians planning to travel to Libya to ensure they carry the correct documentation.
Roshdy said that Egyptian citizens found to have entered Libya illegally were carrying “forged visas or work contracts or they arrive in Libya without a preliminary contract”. He added that some also carried forged health certificates and some travelled “without passports or Egyptian identification papers”.
The spokesperson appealed to Egyptians “to ensure the safety of their papers and the authenticity of labour contracts” before they travel to Libya. He also called on citizens to avoid using illegal access points “for their own safety and so they are not subjected to the hardship of detention and deportation”.
He added that the large number of deportations has become a burden for the consular section of the Egyptian embassy in Libya, “which has to take into account its responsibility and serves hundreds of thousands of Egyptian citizens who are in Libya lawfully”.
Earlier in April 11 Egyptians were detained attempting to enter Yemen illegally from Saudi Arabia. Six others were arrested in Angola for living there illegally. Egyptian workers in Jordan have also had problems regarding normalising their legal status. The ministry agreed with the Jordanian authorities to allow Egyptian workers a grace period to organise their work papers.
Libyan and Egyptian armed forces signed a cooperation agreement earlier in April in order to tackle border security issues, one of which is illegal immigration.
In July 2012 a tripartite meeting between the Egyptian, Libyan and Tunisian foreign ministers announced the Cairo Declaration, which included plans for talks to establish a Free Movement Zone between the three countries. As yet no agreement has been reached.