Egypt Army launches military operation "Desert Storm" against extremists in northern Sinai 2807131
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Defence & Security News - Egypt
|Sunday, July 28, 2013 01:41 PM|
|Egypt Army launches military operation "Desert Storm" against extremists in northern Sinai.|
Egypt’s military forces have started a massive operation against armed extremists in northern Sinai Peninsula, reports in the Egyptian media say. The operation dubbed ‘Desert Storm’ was launched by the Egyptian army in North Sinai Governorate on Saturday, July 27, 2013, and will last for 48 hours, Al Ahram newspaper said citing security sources.
Egyptian soldiers with armoured vehicles are deployed in the northern Sinai Peninsula.
The military action aims to block extremists’ desert and mountain bases and end terrorist activity in the region, primarily in the northern and central Sinai.
Two of Egypt’s field armies, as well as the country’s Air Force and Navy are reportedly taking part in this large-scale operation.
The military are said to be blocking all the roads, bridges and tunnels leading from Northern Sinai to other provinces of Egypt.
The security forces maintain there are about 500 armed extremists in the area that may use the local civilians as human shield.
The security situation in North Sinai has deteriorated after the former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi was ousted on July 3. The local insurgents that have been active ever since the popular uprising of January 2011 are said to have been joined by Islamist supporters that vowed to lead an armed fight against the authorities.
The Muslim Brotherhood has denied having a hand in the escalating violence in the region. However, one of the group’s leaders was quoted as saying that the insurgent attacks would end as soon as “the legitimate president” is freed from detention, according to RIA Novosti.
At least 23 members of the security forces and 10 civilians have been killed in the North Sinai city of Al-Arish by suspected Jihadist militants since Morsi’s ouster, according to Ahram Online.