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Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Wahat attacks risk opening new front for security forces -Reuters

The Wahat attack risks opening up another front for security forces far beyond northern Sinai, Patrick Markey and Ahmed Mohamed Hassan write for Reuters. “Analysts and security sources said the heavy weapons and tactics employed indicated ties to Islamic State or more likely an al Qaeda brigade led by Hesham al-Ashmawy, a former Egyptian special forces officer turned jihadist.” An intelligence analyst says, “there is a strong al Qaeda presence in Libya that can support such an endeavour in Egypt. Usually, a militant group in decline (IS) and an increase in competition between two groups translates into a more aggressive stance, and attempts at larger and more quality attacks.” A police officer says the nature of this front is different from Sinai’s as terrorists “are able to move in the Western Desert easier than they do in Sinai … It’s not like Sinai, which you can cordon off.”

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