38K Egyptians fled Libya via Sallum crossing since Feb. airstrikes
Sallum crossing, Egyptian Libyan borders - YOUM7 ( Archive)

CAIRO: Some 38,342 Egyptians have fled Libya through the western Sallum border crossing since Egyptian airstrikes hit Islamic State (IS) group’s strongholds in Libya in February, Youm7 reported Friday.

The retaliatory airstrikes were in response to the IS’s gruesome video of the beheading of 20 Egyptian Copts in Libya’s city of Sirte.

Since then, Egypt has banned traveling to the oil-rich country as well as announced plan to help Egyptian nationals to return back either through the western border or via air.

The increasingly volatile security situation in the North African country after Islamist militants controlled swaths of its territory has prompted thousands of Egyptians to abandon their goals to make living in the country. However, dozens of Egyptians are being arrested, on a daily basis, at the Sallum crossing for attempting to “illegally enter” into Libyan soil.

Libya has been one of the favorable destinations for Egyptian laborers who are seeking opportunities to make a better living.

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