A fisherman at Lake Bardawil in North Sinai – Egypt Today/Ahmed Hussein
CAIRO – 22 September 2018: The Egyptian Embassy in Nicosia has reported that the Turkish occupation forces detained a Cypriot fishing vessel with four Egyptian fishermen sailors on board near the coast of Northern Cyprus, Egypt's Foreign Ministry spokesman Ahmed Abu Zeid stated on Saturday.
The Cypriot Government has immediately filed a protest to the United Nations peacekeeping force in Cyprus, Abu Zeid added.
The UN is trying to "resolve this situation, which is regrettable,” UN spokesman Aleem Siddique said to Cyprus News Agency (CNA).
Cypriot Foreign Ministry spokesman Demetris Samuel said the owner of the Cyprus-flagged fishing boat told authorities that a Turkish warship approached his vessel 20 miles (32 kilometers) off the island’s northwestern coast Friday evening, according to CNA.
The crew of the vessel, including one Greek Cypriot and four Egyptian fishermen were then arrested and the boat was towed to a harbor in the island’s breakaway Turkish Cypriot north.
Abu Zeid asserted that the ministry will continue to follow up with its contacts at the Cypriot Foreign Ministry and the United Nations Peacekeeping Mission in Cyprus (UNFICYP) to release the Egyptian sailors.
A Turkish Cypriot news agency quoted police as saying that the crew of the Greek-flagged boat was arrested for violating Turkish Cypriot territorial waters.