Dead migrants found in Libya desert


Libyan aid workers recovered the bodies of 19 migrants believed to be Egyptians in Libya’s eastern desert, a Red Crescent spokesman said.

The migrants appeared to have been smuggled into Libya on foot and died due to high temperatures and hunger, said Khaled al-Raqi, a Red Crescent spokesman in Tobruk.

They were found on Saturday more than 400 km south of Tobruk, in the Jaghboub desert, Raqi said. Seven were identified from papers or identity cards and the rest were thought to be Egyptian from their appearance, he said.

The seven came from Assiuyt and Minya, areas on the River Nile south of Cairo, and from Kafr el Sheikh, in the Nile Delta north of Cairo.

Libyan television station Libya Alaan broadcast footage of Libyan Red Crescent workers offloading bodies from a truck into black body bags.

Egyptian migrants try to cross to Europe from the African coast, particularly from Libya, though boats also increasing depart from Egypt. Most Libyan smugglers sending migrants by sea towards Europe do so from western Libya.

Many Egyptians and migrants of other nationalities work in Libya, though fewer than in the past.

The Egyptian embassy in Libya, currently based in Cairo, said it was working with Libyan authorities to repatriate the seven confirmed to be Egyptian and to check the identities of the other 12.