UAE denounces attack at French consulate in Jeddah    Ismaily sign Angolan forward Ary Papel    Elite sport to continue in France despite lockdown: Sports Minister    Al-Azhar condemns terror attack in Nice: reaffirms 'religions are innocent of these criminal acts'    Leipzig face major Bundesliga test after European mauling    49 coronavirus cases recorded in schools out of 25 million students: Egypt's education minister    Pompeo, in Indonesia, renews China attacks as US vote looms    The US at the brink of chaos    UK doing everything it can to avoid national lockdown, minister says    Tunisian parliament, cbank chief tell govt to cut spending plans    In Photos: Egypt collector accumulated over 100 vintage cars    Egypt extends deadline for reconciliation requests in building violations to 30 November    El Gouna Film Festival sheds light on digital media in the wake of COVID-19    Parliament's ‘driving force'    The Senate and the return of party politics    Sculptor Tarek Zabady, tamer of difficult materials    GERD: In quest of meaningful negotiations    Egyptian child Maysarah wins Austria 2020 'Person of the Year' award    Egyptian insurance companies' premiums 9.6% up in five months    Egypt's President Sisi names new head of anti-corruption watchdog    Egypt's offers 18 bln pounds T-bills on Sunday    EgyptAir offering discounts for some international flights    Egypt records 212 new coronavirus cases, 14 deaths on Saturday    Egypt to require PCR coronavirus tests for airport travelers    Egypt sends 125 tonnes of glass by sea to Beirut    Legend Messi officially wants to leave Barcelona, hands transfer request    Global smartphone sales drop 20% in Q2, yet Apple's iPhone sales steady    Sisi: Egypt keen on establishing development projects with Iraq, Jordan    Egyptian megastar Amr Diab releases new hit music video    Making of Harry Potter will be available for fans at new park in Tokyo    Egypt's Senate elections official results to be announced Wednesday    Netflix Egypt is bringing megastar Amr Diab back with a new original    Egypt reopens Rafah border crossing for first time since April    Egypt's senate elections 2020 trending on social media in few days    African Champions League final will be played on Oct. 16-17, CAF says    No room to delay Egyptian Premier League games – EFA's board member    The Facebook Preacher's Search for Fame, and Egypt's Economy    Egypt calls on UNSC to address oil spill risks off Yemen coast    Egypt economically strong in face of COVID-19, reforms ongoing: International Cooperation Minister    Arafa Holding reports $144,000 COVID-19-related losses in April    Egypt's efforts in Libya to activate free will of Libyan people: Al-Sisi    Hyksos campaigns were internal takeover, not foreign invaders: study    COVID-19 affects Egypt sporting clubs    COVID-19 will soon turn to seasonal like swine flu: Presidential Health Advisor    ‘Egypt's Support' coalition convenes to discuss its Senate election list    Robbery attempt leads to discovery of Ptolemaic monuments in Qena    Flouting international guidance, Ethiopia unilaterally starts filling its Nile dam    Zaha speaks out after online racial abuse    

Thank you for reporting!
This image will be automatically disabled when it gets reported by several people.

Sinai Province video ‘Flames of the Desert' settles unknown fate of 2 missing police officers
The IS-affiliate released video footage of recent attacks against the Armed Forces in North Sinai
Published in Daily News Egypt on 02 - 08 - 2016

The Islamic State-affiliated group Sinai Province published a new video Monday evening revealing that its militants killed two police officers who were reported missing in March following an attack against El-Safa security checkpoint in Al-Arish.
The video titled Laheeb El-Sahraa (Flames of the Desert) also included footage of several encounters between the Armed Forces and Sinai Province.
The two missing men were a police officer and a police conscript. They were part of a police force that was struck by a deadly attack from Sinai Province militants, which resulted in the death of 15 police officers at the time.
Following the attack, the Ministry of Interior's media office told Daily News Egypt that the missing police officer, Mohammed Abdelrahim, was believed to be among the 15 killed, despite his brother‘s denial.
"Interior Ministry officials have not taken any official action regarding my brother and the solider. If he were among the 15 killed, his body would have turned up," the brother of the officer told Daily News Egypt earlier in March.
Furthermore, the ministry did not release any information regarding the conscript who went missing. Instead, it later asserted in a clear contradiction to previous statements that a "security sweep" is ongoing to find both the missing men.
Sinai Province's half-hour video also showed a great number of its attacks against the North Sinai-based Army Forces, including direct confrontations, detonations of improvised explosive devices (IED), sniper attacks, and the use of anti-aircraft guns and anti-tank grenade launchers.
Despite numerous statements recently issued by high-ranking army officials regarding restoring stability and safety in North Sinai and frequent successful strikes against militants, the released video indicates an immense failure by the Armed Forces to confront attacks.
Apache escapes scene
In one clip in the video footage, an army-owned Apache helicopter was subject to heavy fire by Sinai Province militants using an anti-aircraft gun. But instead of confronting the group, the Apache chose to escape.
In another clip, a number of police conscripts and officers using a tank appear to be failing to successfully confront several Sinai Province infantry. A conscript tried to use the artillery mounted on the tank but failed, so he and the driver of the tank decided to immediately escape the area in the tank.
Al-Arish-based journalist Ahmed Al-Rafhawy told Daily News Egypt Tuesday: "The attacks shown in the video took place this year. The most dangerous attack shown was a clash in January—militants confronted a counter-army campaign in the village of El-Toma, Sheikh Zuweid."
Armed Forces' M60 tank raises Islamic State flag
An army campaign targets to establish a new security checkpoint in El-Toma—considered a stationing point for Sinai Province militants. The campaign was met by heavy resistance from the province's militants who used missiles to destroy several tanks, Al-Rafhawy said.
Scenes from the released video show how Sinai Province confronted the campaign and succeeded in capturing an M60 tank and a bulldozer that army personnel abandoned due to heavy fire, he added.
Moreover, the footage showed snipers from the militant group targeting army personnel who were stationed at army checkpoints distributed across different areas of Al-Arish, Rafah, and Sheikh Zuweid in the North Sinai governorate.
Militant propaganda designed to lower morale
Contrary to this, former assistant to the minister of interior Mohamed Nour El-Deen told Daily News Egypt Tuesday that the army is still conducting successful operations against Sinai Province militants through air strikes and ground military campaigns.
Everything shown in the recently released video has been "photoshopped", he claimed.
"Criminals who are financed by Qatar and Turkey in North Sinai published this video to lower morale. They have simply used old footage of previous attacks before the formation of the unified command of the area east of the canal which now directly targets terrorists," Nour El-Deen explained.
Regarding the performance of the Armed Forces' media office, Nour El-Deen called on the official spokesperson to publish photos of recent army campaigns that show the successful advance against Sinai Province.
"The media office does not publish photos of Islamic State affiliates who were killed in clashes, owing to the rules it follows based on religious principles," he added.
Chief of the unified command of the area east of the canal, Osama Askar, recently said that the Sinai peninsula is completely under the army's control, noting that terrorists are being dealt knockout blows by the Armed Forces.
Questionable effectiveness of MRAP vehicles
Despite these claims by officials, several clips from the video footage raised questions regarding the effectiveness and efficiency of Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles—which were recently exported to Egypt by the United States—as militants have succeeded in detonating these armoured vehicles with IEDs, something these vehicles are specifically designed to withstand.
In May, the US embassy in Egypt announced in an official statement that the first shipment of MRAP vehicles had arrived at the port of Alexandria "for delivery to the Egyptian military as the first batch of a total of 762 MRAP vehicles that will be used to ‪combat terrorism".
Sinai's joint military command
The Armed Forces in North Sinai have achieved great success in combating terrorism and have dealt harsh blows against militants, the former commander of the Third Field Army said at the inauguration of the tree-planting initiative in Sahel El-Tina.
Al-Sisi formed the joint military command following deadly attacks in North Sinai that left at least 30 security personnel and civilians dead in January 2015.
Military insurgency against army and police forces in North Sinai is still on the rise despite intensive military operations targeting Sinai Province.
Sinai Province, formerly known as Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis, is a major hurdle for Egypt's current regime in regaining control of the peninsula as the militant group continuously targets army and police members whom they consider "apostates" that must be killed.

Clic here to read the story from its source.