By Libya Herald reporters.
Tripoli, 2 February 2015:
Egypt is to lift visa requirements for Libyan women, injured and students following discussions with . . .[restrict]the Egyptian authorities, the Head of Information, Culture and Antiquities, Omar Al-Gawairi has announced.
Speaking on Al-Arabiya TV’s Sharia Masri programme on Saturday evening, Gawairi said that planned changes meant that injured Libyans heading to Egypt for treatment will in future need only an official doctor’s letter. The border between the two countries would be merely “organisational”, he said, adding that Libyans and Egyptians shared tribal and familial links that bound them together.
“In the next few days, Egypt plans to ease up on entry requirements for Libyans. Women and students studying in Egypt will not be required to obtain visas, nor will those with urgent medical needs who are carrying the appropriate medical reports,” Gawairi said.
Libya also had plans to increase investment in Egypt, he said.
“Libyan investment in Egypt will exceed $10 billion, mainly through the establishment of an oil refinery near the Libyan border at Mersa Matrouh and investment in electricity production,” Gawairi said. The final details of the oil refinery project had now been agreed, he explained.
As for the broadcasting sector, Gawairi reported the Egyptian government had approved the return of Sa’ah TV to the Libyan authorities. The Cairo-based station was approved by the government of Ali Zeidan with some $45 million invested in it. However, those running it had allegedly refused to hand it over to the present Libyan government. Currently not operating, having been shut down by the Egyptian authorities at Libya’s request, Gawairi said that it was now in the process of being taken over and that it would be reopened.
Quizzed about the December kidnapping of Egyptian Coptic Christians in Libya, Gawairi said that the whole country had been “hijacked” by foreign extremists who were responsible for the abductions. A group claiming affiliation with the Islamic State has, in fact, claimed responsibility for their seizure.
“We have lost nearly two million Egyptian workers over the past year who, we Libyans, have always treated as brothers. We do not discriminate against people because of their religion, sect or race,” he stressed. [/restrict]