Egypt to set up 'shelter camps' for Libya flood survivors
September 13, 2023 09:49 PM
Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi directed authorities Wednesday to set up camps in the country's west to provide shelter for survivors of devastating floods in neighbouring Libya, state media reported.
Sisi ordered "the establishment of shelter camps" in the western coastal region bordering Libya "for our impacted Libyan brothers who have lost their homes", according to official newspaper Al-Ahram.
Libyan authorities have reported more than 3,800 death from the flash floods that hit the eastern city of Derna on Sunday, but the real figures are feared to be much higher.
At least 30,000 people have been left homeless in the city, according to the United Nations, after the torrential rains of Storm Daniel had submerged entire neighbourhoods.
The aid is unprecedented in Egypt's recent history, with Cairo having repeatedly refused to set up camps in the face of refugee crises.
Most recently, over 280,000 people have fled war in Sudan across Egypt's southern border, but Cairo has said there was no need for camps as the new arrivals are given the right to work and move freely.
Egypt on Tuesday sent three military cargo planes to Libya, carrying search and rescue teams, and aid including medical supplies and tents, according to the army's spokesman.
Libyan authorities said Tuesday that the bodies of 145 Egyptians who had died in the floods were transported across the border.
Sisi "offered his condolences to the families of the Egyptian citizens who died in Libya", his spokesman said Wednesday, and directed officials to provide relatives of the deceased with "urgent aid".