24 Police die in Militant Ambush Attack in Sinai

Egyptian-Security

A vicious attack on a police convoy in Sinai left 24 police officers killed and Egypt’s population even more polarized between pro-Army and pro-Morsi groups.  The Ministry of Interior announced that an armed gunman attacked a bus of police officers with a rocket propelled grenade, instantly killing those inside. No arrests have been made yet. Muslim Brotherhood spokesman Amr Darrag has denounced the attack and called for an investigation and prosecution of those who organized and executed it.

Sinai has been a center of terrorist and militant violence since Morsi’s ousting July 3rd. While many pro-Morsi supporters have been killed in clashes with the army in Cairo and Alexandria, most deaths in Sinai are of soldiers or border security officers. There have been at least 30 attacks on the Egyptian Army in Sinai since the Morsi’s ousting, most of which typically take place as an armed ambush of security vehicles or border postings.

Prior to General Sisi’s forceful takeover of Morsi’s government, Israeli Military Analyst, Ron Daniel told Israel’s Channel 2 TV that the Egyptian Army destroyed several underground tunnels in the Sinai used by Hamas to get into Egypt from Gaza undetected.  There has also been speculation amongst the Egyptian population and military government that Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood are political allies.

In televised speech to Army and Police officers on Sunday, General Sisi denounced all violence and banned civilian vigilantes, but also said “Our self-restraint will not continue. We will not accept any more attacks. We will meet with full force. Attackers want to destroy Egypt. Whoever imagines violence will make the state and Egyptians kneel must reconsider; we will never be silent in the face of the destruction of the country.”

Since Mohamed Morsi’s ousting as president July 3rd 2013, an estimated 900 people have died and 4000 have been injured. Including the police convoy attack in Sinai, approximately 94 deaths have been policemen or army soldiers.

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