Middle East

Seven Egyptians found shot dead in Libya: security

In this photo taken on a government organized tour, the Marriott hotel is seen in the background as youths enjoy the beach in Tripoli, Libya, Tuesday, May 3, 2011. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)

BENGHAZI, Libya: Seven Egyptians were found shot dead near Benghazi in eastern Libya on Monday, a security services spokesman for the restive city said.

"The bodies of seven Egyptians were found in Jalluta, east of Benghazi," Ibrahim al-Sharaa told AFP.

The spokesman was unable to confirm rumours that the Egyptians were Christians, who have often been targeted on charges of proselytising in the Muslim country.

State news agency Lana said the bodies were identified by Egyptian residents of Benghazi.

Tens of thousands of Egyptians work in Libya, mostly as labourers.

Benghazi, cradle of Libya's 2011 armed uprising that toppled dictator Moamer Kadhafi, has seen near-daily attacks on security and other targets as the weak central government has struggled to rein in former rebel brigades turned militias.

In January, gunmen kidnapped five Egyptian diplomats in Tripoli and held them for several hours.





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