UPDATE: Egypt’s local news digest Sept. 23: Egypt migrant boat death toll rises to 162: health ministry
Rescued migrants from a boat that capsized in the Mediterranean Sea are pictured in Al-Beheira, Egypt, September 22, 2016. REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany


CAIRO: No more browsing from site to site, view the top local news stories on Sept. 23 here:

Egypt migrant boat death toll rises to 162: health ministry

The death toll from an illegal migration boat that had capsized off the Mediterranean governorate of Beheira climbed to 162, the health ministry announced in a statement Friday.

Spokesman for Beheira governorate Wahdan el Sayyed said the ambulance authority has received 110 corpses on Friday. All the bodies were buried after they were identified by their relatives, he added.

On Wednesday, the boat named ‘Mawkeb al Rasol’ drowned about 12 nautical miles northeast of Beheira’s city of Rosetta with over 600 illegal migrants on board.

More than 150 people from countries, including Sudan, Eritrea and Somali have been rescued by the Egyptian authorities over the past two days.

On Thursday, four boat crew members were arrested over the incident.

The UNHCR Refugee Agency announced in a Friday statement it is “deeply saddened by the loss of life after yet another boat capsized in the Mediterranean, this time off the coast of Rosetta, Egypt, reportedly carrying around 450 people.”

Egypt has intervened in a number of migration attempts by hundreds of asylum seekers from the Middle East and North Africa, particularly from Egypt Syria, Iraq and Libya, via the Mediterranean Sea to Italy or Greece as gates for other European countries.


Antiquities ministry launches cycling marathon

More than 400 Egyptian youth on Friday have participated in a cycling marathon launched by the Egyptian Antiquities Ministry, Youm7 reported.

Under the title “Cycling to the Museum,” the marathon started Friday morning from the Egyptian Museum at Tahrir Square and ended at the Textile Museum in Islamic Cairo.

Elham Salah, Head of the Museums Sector in the ministry said that the marathon, which is organized in collaboration with the Misr Al-Irada NGO “highlights the museums’ leading role in raising the cultural awareness of people through different kinds of activities,” according to Youm7.


38k Egyptian pilgrims return home: official

A total of 37,892 Egyptian pilgrims have returned home from Jeddah and Medina so far since the end of the Hajj season, head of the Egyptian Hajj mission Sayed Maher was quoted by Youm7 on Friday.

The number of Egyptian pilgrims performed hajj rituals this year is estimated at 80,000 people.

EgyptAir Holding Company chairman Safwat Mussalam announced that the return flights for pilgrims from Jeddah and Medina started on Sep.17. The scheduled flights will transport 75,000 passengers back to Egypt, he added.

The company will operate 22 flights Friday from Jeddah and Medina airports to Cairo and Borg el Arab airports with 5,000 Egyptian pilgrims on board, he added.


Japanese company to execute Egypt’s first phase of 4th metro line

An international tender will be proposed to select one of a number of Japanese companies that will execute the first phase of the fourth line of the Cairo metro, Youm7 reported.

The first phase is 19 km of length; it has 17 stations and runs across Haram St.

The Central Administration for Planning at the National Authority for Tunnels has signed a deal with a consortium of Japanese companies to carry out consultant works of the first phase.

Tareq Abu el-Wafa, the head of the administration, told Youm7 that the tender will be according to the Japanese financing terms that are in the form of soft loan worth $1.2 billion.


Extra tons of Sugar, oil to be added to ration cards: Supply Minister

The new Supply Minister Aly Moselhy has decided to increase the amount of sugar and oil added to ration cards to meet citizens’ needs.

He said that there will be extra 6,000 tons of sugar and 2,000 tons of oil pumped daily into the cards.


785 Palestinian pilgrims arrive at Cairo Airport

The last batch of Palestinian pilgrims returning from Saudi Arabia has arrived at Cairo Airport during the early hours of Friday, Youm7 reported.

The batch includes 785 pilgrims who came on a three flights from Madina to Egypt.


Egypt futsal team beats Italy, earns pass to World Cup Colombia 2016

Egypt national futsal team won over Italian team with a 4:3 scoreline Thursday, according to FIFA.com.

By winning the match, Egypt has earned passage to the FIFA Futsal World Cup Colombia 2016 quarter-finals.


Halted shipments of wheat might be allowed in next week: anonymous sources

Anonymous sources at the Ministry of Supply told Youm7 that the halted consignments of imported wheat (540,000 tons) will enter ports starting next week.

The decision to allow the shipments in came after the Minister of Agriculture retracted his decision to ban importing ergot-infected wheat. He instead re-allowed import of 0.05 percent ergot-infected wheat that meets international standards.

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