Egypt sends 5 more evacuation flights to Tunisia, Algeria opens borders
Egypt Air plane - YOUM7 (Archive)

CAIRO: Egypt will send five flights to Tunisia Friday in order to evacuate Egyptians stranded in Tunisia after fleeing violence in Libya, Egyptian Aviation Minister Hossam Kamal said in a press statement.

As of press time, three of the flights had already departed.

Libya is experiencing fierce battles between rival militias, primarily between troops affiliated with the government and insurgent militias describing themselves as revolutionaries; fighting intensified in mid-July.

Since the start of the Egypt’s evacuation flights for its nationals late last month, the number of Egyptians who have been airlifted in 55 previous flights has reached 14,200, according to the statement.

Egyptian Foreign Ministry spokesman Badr Abdel Atty told The Cairo Post Friday that Algeria, like Tunisia, also agreed to open its borders with Libya to allow around 700 Egyptians to enter Algeria.

Many Egyptians have also departed Libya via land and sea routes.

The Egypt-Libya border crossing at Sallum has received more than 82,000 since the latest flare-up in Libyan violence, according to Youm7.

Around 800,000 Egyptians resided and worked in Libya before the current crisis according to Abdel Atty. Most lived in Tripoli—the epicenter of the violence—and have largely fled. He added, however, that many Egyptians living in villages not affected by the violence have stayed put.

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