Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on Tuesday (November 8th) approved a law aimed at curbing illegal immigration and cracking down on human smuggling, Egyptian media reported.
The law was passed by Egypt's parliament in mid-October , in a move to combat human smuggling along the country's northern Mediterranean coast.
In September, a boat carrying up to 450 people capsized off Egypt's north coast. At least 202 bodies were recovered from the sea and 169 people rescued.
In June, around 320 migrants and refugees from a boat that departed from Egypt drowned off the island of Crete.
The new law calls for the formation of a national committee to combat illegal immigration and human smuggling and for the establishment of a fund to provide financial aid to victims of trafficking.
The legislation punishes those convicted of smuggling potential migrants or acting as brokers with prison sentences and fines. It also imposes prison sentences on those who facilitate migrants' journeys or provide shelter to them.