CAIRO: A total of 400 feddans in the Bahariya Oasis have been restored from squatters and an auger drill and other drilling equipment were seized, according to a Thursday statement by Giza governorate.
The drilling was taking place without a license and the lands were illegally seized, the statement said. The Bahariya Oasis falls within the jurisdiction of Giza governorate.
Another land of 100 feddans was recovered in Mandisha village in Giza, the statement added.
In December, 186 feddans were restored by the government in Bahariya oasis west of Egypt after squatter dug wells up to 50 meters deep into the ground. Some of the lands have been allocated to agricultural reclamation projects.
Parts of the 1.5 million-feddan project announced by President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi to reclaim lands fall in the Western Desert. In February, he formed a committee to recover looted lands, including presidential assistants for national projects and counterterrorism Ibrahim Mahlab, Ahmed Gamal el-Deen, and Local Development Minister Ahmed Zaky Badr.
A campaign to “forcibly” remove encroachments on the 1.5 million-feddan farming project was launched Monday, an official source at the Agriculture Ministry told May 23.
A total of 300,000 feddans of the 1.5 million are illegally seized by some companies and citizens, said the source at the General Authority for Reconstruction and Agricultural Development (GARAD) of the ministry.
The mega-project aims to produce strategic crops, provide job opportunities for thousands and establish new urban communities.
Since the January 25 Revolution, a total of 1.5 million encroachment cases have been reported, violating a total of 66,000 feddans nationwide, according to a report issued by the Ministry of Agriculture in March.
Meanwhile, a total of 17,000 feddans illegally seized by citizens have been recovered in more than six governorates, spokesperson of the Committee to Recover State Land Ahmed Ayoub told al-Qahera al-Yoam show on Al-Yawm May 22.