19 March 2013

Egypt: Unprecedented Security Measures in Sinai

North Sinai Governorate has witnessed unprecedented security measures aiming at maintaining security and stability.

In this context, the Armed Forces and the police have pushed in military vehicles, amours and a large number of personnel in central Arish, on the international road between Al Arish- Al Qantara and Sheikh Zuwayed and Rafah regions.

These measures follow aborting an attempt to smuggle textiles used in manufacturing Armed Forces uniform through tunnels. Commenting on this smuggling operation, Taher Al Nunu, the Spokesman for Hamas movement said the seized textiles were planned to be used for manufacturing clothes for Gaza children and not making any damage to the Egyptian national security.

Security troops have been intensively deployed in Arish streets and squares. Security checking points were placed in the main points of the city.

Security troops are searching cars and passersby and check their identities. A security source said all security precautions have been taken and different plans were made to monitor inlets and outlets of north Sinai.

Security surveillance measures in border areas have been intensified to nip smugglers.

A Security Source said north Sinai security services are continuing the closure of tunnels between Rafah and Gaza Strip in order to prohibit the infiltration of any smuggling adding heavy equipment and big concrete blocks have been pushed there to close tunnels on the Egyptian side of borders so that these tunnels may not be used once more in infiltration and smuggling.

Major General Samih Bishawy, the Director of North Sinai security said a security plan has been mapped out with the aim of apprehending tunnels smugglers and all elements, which have infiltrated into Egypt adding under this plan, chalets, furnished flats and hotels are searched for infiltrators adding any suspect person who does not have identity card is apprehended.

He said a large number of cars laden with different commodities and which do not have selling bills are confiscated.

This comes at the time when police station No.3 in Arish apprehended three Palestinians in different parts of Sinai one of them is carrying an expired passport.

A Security source said all legal measures have been taken towards the Palestinians who have been proved to have infiltrated into Egypt through underground tunnels in Rafah.

They will be put to trial according to the Egyptian law.

In Suez, Major General Ossama Ashar, the Commander of the Second field Army said changing the uniform of the army in the city came after consultations with the General Command of the Armed Forces adding security formations are currently being made to pursue elements involved in using the military uniform and opening automatic fire at Suez citizens during their demonstrations with the aim of spoiling relations hip between the army and the people.

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