Egypt Arrests 12 at Protest Against Handover of Red Sea Islands to Saudi Arabia

Last Thursday, state media reported that the Egyptian government approved the maritime border agreement despite a court ruling the deal unconstitutional.

Egyptians shout slogans against Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi during a protest against the decision to hand over control of two strategic Red Sea islands to Saudi Arabia in front of the Press Syndicate, in Cairo, Egypt.
Amr Nabil, AP Photo

Egyptian police have arrested 12 people at a protest against the transfer of two Red Sea islands to Saudi Arabia.

Security officials say the Monday arrests were made around the Journalists' Union building in central Cairo, where dozens of people, mostly lawyers and journalists, had gathered to demonstrate. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to brief reporters.

Last Thursday, state media reported that President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi's government approved the maritime border agreement and sent it to parliament for ratification despite a court ruling the deal unconstitutional.

The transfer was announced alongside a Saudi aid package last year, leading critics to condemn it as a land sell-off. The April signing of the agreement set off the largest demonstrations of el-Sissi's two-year rule.