Fifteen Egyptian fishermen were released from Libyan custody and deported on Wednesday after being held for violating Libya’s territorial waters.
Ali Al-Ashiry, Egypt’s deputy foreign minister for consulate affairs, said the Libyan prosecutor general’s order to release the fishermen came as a result of the “success of the efforts of the Egyptian embassy in Tripoli.” The fishermen’s boat remains in Libyan custody, Al-Ashiry said in an official foreign ministry statement, which the Libyan prosecutor general promised would be released soon.
Al-Ashiry stated that a number of the released fishermen had violated Libya’s territorial waters more than once in the past. He stressed the importance of respecting the law and refraining from violating other countries’ territorial waters to avoid legal persecution.
The deputy minister asserted that Egypt’s foreign ministry is keen on considering agreements with neighbouring countries which would allow both parties to make use of fishery in a manner beneficial to all.
Egyptian fishermen are frequently found fishing illegally in territorial waters. Fishermen brave the trip to countries such as Libya, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, Malta, Cyprus, Greece, Turkey, Israel and Italy because of the excessive number of boats and the insufficient amount of fish in Egyptian waters.