Egyptian naval forces stopped an illegal immigration attempt in October 2015. Handout photo by the Egyptian military
CAIRO, Jun 10 (Aswat Masriya) – Egyptian border guard forces have thwarted illegal migration attempts by 445 persons before they could set sail from the country's coasts, Egyptian Military Spokesman Mohamed Samir said on Friday.
They included 112 Egyptians, as well as Comoran, Ethiopian, Eritrean, Gambian, Liberian, Somali, Sudanese and Yemeni nationals, Samir added in a statement.
Egyptian forces stopped 267 persons from sailing off the Egyptian coastal city of Rosetta on board a fishing boat into the Mediterranean Sea.
Another 124 persons were prevented from leaving Egypt’s Suez, and 54 were stopped from sailing off Alexandria’s coast.
Last April, Italy said that a boat capsized off Egypt's coast killing hundreds of migrants.
Conflicts and dire economic conditions in the Middle East and African countries pushed millions of migrants and refugees to cross over to Europe to flee poverty and war.
Last September, the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres said in a statement that "Europe is facing its biggest refugee influx in decades."
Guterres said then that so far more than 300,000 people have risked their lives to cross the Mediterranean Sea out of whom over 2,600 did not survive.