Six Egyptian Coptic Christians have been kidnapped and are being held for ransom in neighboring Libya, an MP and media outlets said on Thursday.
“Criminal gangs in Libya have kidnapped six Egyptian Copts about a week ago and have demanded a large ransom to release them,” tweeted lawmaker Mostafa Bakry, known to have close ties with the Egyptian authorities.
He said those kidnapped are “simple workers who traveled to look for work opportunities in construction and were kidnapped” while traveling by road near Sabratha in western Libya.
Media sources close to the Coptic Orthodox Church said the men had been kidnapped while traveling between Benghazi and Tripoli.
They added that the kidnappers had demanded a random of $30,000 for each of the six men.
Libya is home to a sizeable community of Egyptians, many of whom travel to the oil-rich country seeking work.