Israel Counterterrorism Bureau Calls on Israelis to Leave Sinai, Citing Immediate Threat
Israel’s Counterterrorism Bureau issued an urgent warning to Israeli tourists in Sinai on Saturday morning urging them to leave the peninsula immediately, citing a “critical and immediate threat.”
“Based on information in our possession, terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip are continuing to work energetically to carry out terrorist attacks against Israeli targets on Sinai’s beaches in the immediate term,” the Bureau said in a statement.
The organization called on the families of Israeli tourists currently staying in Sinai to contact their relatives and inform them of the warning.
On average, some 3,000 people pass through the border crossing between Israel and Sinai every day, but most of them are not Israeli tourists, according to the Israel Airports Authority.
Two weeks ago, Egypt announced it was launching an operation to eliminate terrorism in northern Sinai by sending in hundreds of police officers and special forces, along with armored vehicles.
Since the fall of the Mubarak regime in Egypt, Sinai has experienced a wave of violent attacks against tourists and infrastructure, with a key pipeline carrying natural gas to Israel and Jordan being blown up repeatedly by assailants.
Earlier this month, Israel Military Intelligence chief Major General Aviv Kochavi warned that terrorist organizations were strengthening their hold over the Sinai, adding that Israel had foiled around a dozen attempts to launch terrorist attacks this year.