Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Egyptian military clamps down on Sinai unrest

Eight people were killed and 15 injured September 3 in north Sinai when four Egyptian Apache helicopters fired missiles at purported arms depots in al-Thoma, al-Mahdeya and al-Moqataa, Al-Ahram reported, citing MENA...Reports on September 1 also suggest the Egyptian police averted an attack on a ship headed for the Suez Canal...While the ship escaped undamaged, explosions were heard in the area...Perhaps connected, a top militant leader was arrested in Sinai August 31...Following Egypt’s latest political violence, unrest in the Sinai Peninsula has increased with militants demonstrating the know-how and intent to strike at government targets...Attacks are fairly common in the Sinai where large deserts make effective security difficult to maintain...The violent trend is likely to continue as radical Islamists who once supported the Islamist government in Cairo turn to militancy to express their outrage at the ouster of the Egyptian Prime Minister...At the present moment, similar militancy in mainland Egypt has not yet reached the point to seriously threaten the military regime...In response the Egyptian military are attempting to degrade the capabilities of Sinai militants to pre-empt the spread of militancy into mainland Egypt, an effort made simpler with the current state of emergency...Shipping through the Suez Canal must prepare for further attacks.

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