CAIRO: Some 161Egyptian nationals have returned from Libya through the Sallum border crossing Thursday, raising the number of arrivals to 37,455 since Egyptian airstrikes hit Islamic State (IS) group targets in Libya in February, Youm7 reported.
The number of Egyptian arrivals from Libya has reduced after it reached its peak following the beheading crisis, Marsa Matrouh security chief El-Anani Hamouda said in a statement Friday.
The beheading, a crime widely perceived as “barbaric” was followed by Egyptian military airstrikes on the group’s estimated epicenters in Libya’s northeastern city of Derna.
Since then, thousands of Egyptians have returned back per plans announced by the government.
Egyptians fleeing the war-torn Libya return home through air on board of flights operated by Egypt Air picking them from airports in Tunisia and Algeria on a daily basis.
Also, the Sallum crossing border has been receiving thousands of Egyptians who are exempted of entry fees per a decision by the government.
On the other hand, there is an ongoing intensive operation along the border with Libya to prevent any infiltration or “illegal immigration.” A number of Egyptians and foreigners were arrested while attempting to illegally cross into Libya.
The oil-rich country, which has been dragged into turmoil since 2011, is witnessing a deteriorating security situation amid Islamist militants controlling swaths of territory.
Additional reporting by Hassan Mashaly