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Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Egypt hunting Sinai terrorists;Report: Hamas planning border breach

 Last update - 22:42 15/04/2008       
Egyptian security forces hunting multiple terror cells in Sinai
By Haaretz Service
Egyptian security forces on Tuesday were searching in Sinai for multiple terror cells believed to be planning attacks against foreign nationals, especially Israelis, in the area.
The Counterterrorism Bureau has issued a severe warning against visits by Israelis to Sinai during the upcoming Pesach holiday.
Egyptian military sources told foreign reporters on Tuesday that its forces were searching for four pickup trucks thought to be carrying carrying militants to a target site. Roadblocks were set up throughout Sinai in an effort to apprehend the cells, which are believed to be part of "World Jihad."
Israeli officials fear a terror attack with mass casualties at a tourism site popular with Israelis, as well as attempts to abduct Israeli citizens, possibly with intent to take them to the Gaza Strip and use them as bargaining chips in negotiating the release of Palestinian prisoners being held in Israel. These operations could be carried out by Hamas or Palestinian terror organizations.
Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Tuesday called on Israelis to heed the warnings and cancel any plans to visit Sinai in the near future.
Sinai is the only location abroad with a specific warning, but security preparedness is already at the highest level possible in the wake of Hezbollah's threats to avenge the killing of Imad Mughniyeh in Damascus about two months ago. The focus of the warnings is in East Asia, Africa and in South America. Extraordinary measures to protect Israeli aviation and Israeli institutions abroad are already in place.
Over 50,000 Israelis are expected to cross the border into Sinai and Egypt this coming Passover holiday despite warnings by the security establishment, the Airports Authority reported Monday.
Also Tuesday, Egypt's official newspaper reported a detailed plan by the Palestinian Hamas movement to blow up the concrete wall along the border at Rafah and to kill Egyptian security forces. The Islamic movement was quick to deny the reports.

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