World 27.3.2017 03:53 pm

Security threat may lead to closure of Israeli border with Egypt

AFP/File / <br />A convoy of Egyptian armoured vehicles heads along a road in El-Arish on the Sinai Peninsula on August 13, 2011

AFP/File /
A convoy of Egyptian armoured vehicles heads along a road in El-Arish on the Sinai Peninsula on August 13, 2011

Israel’s counter-terrorism intelligence division assesses that there are hundreds of Israelis on the Sinai beaches right now.

Israel has warned that it may close its border crossing with Egypt on the Sinai Peninsula if any concrete threats against Israeli tourists emerge following acute warnings of an imminent attack in the area.

Talking with reporters on Monday morning, Israel’s counter-terrorism chief Eitan Ben David said that although advisory warnings were at a high level this could be upgraded further following new, but non-specific warnings of an attack being planned on tourists, Israel’s daily Haaretz newspaper reported.

Israel’s counter-terrorism intelligence division assesses that there are hundreds of Israelis on the Sinai beaches right now, and as the Jewish Passover nears, that could reach thousands.

Closing down the border would be an unusual move, but if concrete intelligence arrives, it might be done, David said.

“If we think we have information of some type consequent to which we should shut the border for some hours or days, that option exists,” he reportedly said, pointing out that actually it always exists.

Both Egyptian and Israeli security services are on high alert due to militant attacks being carried out by the Islamic State (IS)-affiliated Sinai Province group which has killed hundreds of members of the Egyptian security forces, government officials and civilians.

In early March the militants put up roadblocks in central Sinai hoping to kidnap Egyptian soldiers and tourists.

– African News Agency

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