CAIRO: A total of 45 Syrians were arrested in an attempt to infiltrate into the country from Sudan, a security source told Youm7 Monday.
The Red Sea border guards apprehended the Syrian nationals in batches and turned them in to the police forces.
They had been abandoned by smugglers at the borders, and they soon got lost in the eastern desert of Egypt, the source said. Egypt shared a border of 1,273 km with Sudan.
Eighteen of the detainees were jailed in Marsa Alam Police Station southeast of Egypt, and 27 in Shalateen Police Station farther towards the Sudanese borders.
The Syrian group is being “well treated” and is provided food and other needs inside the police stations, the source said.
European Union Ambassador James Moran told The Cairo Post in an interview last week that the EU is looking for closer cooperation with Egypt to “get these people smugglers under better control,” adding that this “criminal element is very worrying” as smugglers make huge amounts of money.
Moran also said the EU will allocate new funds to help refugees around the world in June, and although Egypt is not home to refugees as many as in Turkey or Jordan, it still hosts a significant number of refugees; hence the EU wants to assist Egypt with “the burden of refugees.”
A total of 118,512 Syrian refugees are registered in Egypt; the total number of refugees, asylum-seekers and stateless people amount to 250,600, according to the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNCHR.)
The number of refugees in Egypt, both registered and unregistered may reach three million, according to the Egyptian Foundation for Refugee Rights.