UPDATE: Egypt’s local digest on Oct. 7: 10 illegal migration brokers arrested nationwide: interior ministry
Migrants who were rescued from the boat are rescued.
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CAIRO: No more browsing from site to site, view the top local stories in Egypt on Oct. 7, here:

10 illegal migration brokers arrested nationwide: interior ministry

Egypt’s Interior Ministry announced the arrest of 10 illegal migration brokers nationwide, Youm7 reported Friday.

Based on information learned from a confidential informant, security forces at the Mediterranean city of Alexandria raided an apartment and arrested four brokers in possession of large amounts of cash money and photocopies of passports of new illegal migrants, the interior ministry said in a statement.

They have admitted to collect money from Egyptians and nationals from other African countries to facilitate their trip through the Mediterranean to Europe. They have also confessed to have contacted owners of unlicensed and outdated boats to be used in the trip, the statement added.

Two other brokers were arrested in Delta governorate of Gharbia, according to the statement.

The arrest comes as part of ministry’s crackdown following the migrant boat capsized last month with over 600 people onboard.

 

Safaga maritime port to operate “within days”: minister

Transport Minister Galal al Saeed announced the inauguration of the Red Sea port of Safaga by mid October after the completion of a 3-year development project, Youm7 reported Friday.

Located 40 kilometers south of Egypt’s resort city of Hurghada, the port, after increasing its capacity, will increase the commercial traffic in the Red Sea between Egypt and its neighbor countries,” said Saeed.

The project includes space for goods, a passenger terminal, an aluminum terminal, grain terminal, maritime pier, paths and gates in addition to multi-purpose terminal, he added.

The annual capacity of maritime terminal is estimated at 1.3 million passengers, 30,000 cars and 40,000 trucks, said Saeed, adding that the total capacity of trading after the development is 8.5 million tons.

 

Luxor tourism booms after launch of German charter flights

The number of tourists visiting archaeological sites in Luxor on Thursday soared to 1, 200 marking a notable increase after German charter flights resumed operations to the historical city last month, Mostafa Waziri, the General Manager of Luxor Antiquities Sector was quoted by Youm7.

The figure signals a high turnout ahead of the high season, which starts mid October, according to Waziri.

In September, Luxor received four charter flights coming from Germany with 434 tourists on board for the first time after more than two years of suspension for security reasons.

Earlier this month, Egypt’s flagship airline EgyptAir resumed its Luxor-London flights following a one-year suspension of flights between the two destinations.

The number of tourists visiting Egypt has witnessed a sharp decline following the crash of a Russian airliner over Sinai in late October. Germany, Italy, Russia, France, and the U.K. were among the states that decided to halt flights to and from Egyptian airports shortly after the crash.

The industry took a further dive following the murder of Italian Cambridge University graduate, Giulio Regeni, whose body was found dumped along a highway with signs of torture in Egypt’s Giza governorate in early February.

According to the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS), Germany was the second largest market for tourism in Egypt after Russia in 2014.

The number of tourists visiting Egypt in February 2016 decreased by 45.9 percent compared to the same period a year earlier, the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) reported.

In February, the U.K.-based Thomas Cook travel company cancelled all bookings to Sharm al-Sheikh until November 2016, extending a travel ban that began when the government suspended flights following the Russian airliner crash.

The sector, which is the nation’s second highest source of national income after the Suez Canal, provides direct and indirect employment to up to 12.6 percent of the country’s workforce.

Egypt’s tourism authorities said in late December that the country received 9 million tourists in 2015, down from a previously predicted 17 million.

 

Crackdown continues against overpriced recharging cards

Supply Ministry has launched a crackdown on markets selling mobile recharging cards to prevent overpricing after official prices were announced.

Amid the campaign, a total of 300 cards were seized as traders across Cairo were caught selling them at higher prices.

After the Value-added act has been passed by the parliament, the government announced there will be an increase in prices of items by 13 percent.

 

Cairo sees moderate weather of 30°C Friday

Official forecasters have expected a moderate weather to prevail on Friday, with the temperature in Cairo recording highs of 30 °C and lows of 23°C.

 

142 mountain lakes established to combat flooding in South Sinai

A total of 142 mountainous lakes have been established in Sainte Catherine to combat flooding season in South Sinai, according to Minister of Irrigation Mohamed Abdel Atty.

Abdel Atty made his remarks amid announcements of strict measures taken to prevent risks of floods and to utilize them as source of water in Sinai.

 

New Egyptian ambassador appointed in Austria

Ambassador Omar Amer has submitted his credentials as the new Egyptian Ambassador to the interim President of Republic of Austria Doris Boris, Youm7 reported.

 

280K fireworks units seized in crackdown launched at unlicensed toy stores

Supply Police has seized 280,000 fireworks boxes at unlicensed toy stores, Youm7 reported.

The campaign meant to hinder the spread of the fireworks to be used in celebrations of October victory.

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