CAIRO: Fifteen Sudanese people were released Tuesday after they had been arrested on charges of illegal gold excavation in Wadi el-Gemal reserve (Camels Valley) in Marsa Alam, Youm7 reported.
The Red Sea prosecution released the 15 Sudanese nationals; six of whom had expired residencies and nine had valid ones. They all arrived from Ras Hadbara crossing south of Halayeb Triangle and issued work residencies for trade purposes.
They were arrested in Hangaliya Valley with 16 sacks of rocks mixed with raw gold.
Head of the legal affairs of the Wade el-Gemal protectorate told Youm7 Monday that some Sudanese people mine illegally in the area and grind the rocks back home then put them in water mixed with mercury to separate the gold. He added that a ton of rocks, which usually include quartz, can produce 50 grams of gold.
Earlier in November, the Egyptian Mineral Resources Authority and border guards arrested five Sudanese men and an Egyptian in al-Fawakhir mine in the eastern desert with 23 sacks of rocks, 30 kilograms each, according to Youm7.
Egyptian-Sudanese relations strained in the past few weeks over detentions and killings of Sudanese nationals in Egypt.
Twenty Sudanese people were killed and others arrested in Sinai while attempting to illegally migrate to Israel in two separate incidents Nov. 15-23.