Egyptian authorities investigate theft of sunken ships in Red Sea

Specialized security authorities in the Red Sea are investigating a theft involving unknown persons who cut parts from and stole the wreckage of a sunken ship in the Shabur reefs at the bottom of the Red Sea.

Al-Masry Al-Youm published an exclusive report on the incident on Thursday.

Employees in diving and marine centers in Hurghada confirmed that security services and transportation and environmental officials contacted them regarding the incident, and that security services received information about the location of the incident and are searching for the perpetrators.

A number of diving center employees witnessed acts of cutting and stealing ships that are sunk in the depths of the Red Sea.

They consider the incident a crime against one of the most important tourist attractions, saying sunken ship wrecks attract thousands of tourists.

A report by researchers at the Red Sea Reserves confirmed that commercial, military, passenger and tourist sunken ships in about 21 locations in the Red Sea are a treasure for diving enthusiasts.

Ayman Taher, a diving expert, called for coordination between all the concerned authorities in the Red Sea to locate the sites of sunken ships on the map of diving sites in the governorate and to protect them.

Head of the Red Sea Diving Tourism Chamber, Ashraf Saleh, said that he considers sunken ships one of the most important elements of diving tourism marketing.

Mohamed Arafat, a legal expert, stressed that according to international maritime law, sunken ships are the property of the Red Sea Ports Authority, adding that one of the most important strategic goals of the Ministry of Environment is to protect these sunken ships.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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