4 militants killed, 1.7 KM tunnel discovered in N. Sinai
Smuggling tunnels - AFP/Said Khatib

CAIRO: A 1,700 meter-long tunnel, reportedly running from Gaza Strip into North Sinai’s border town of Rafah, has been uncovered during a military raid Tuesday, Youm7 reported.

Four militants were killed and other four suspects were arrested during another military raid targeted the North Sinai’s town of Sheikh Zuwayed, security sources told Youm7.

An infiltrator was caught inside the tunnel, which ends inside Gaza Strip, said the source.

Some 19 other tunnels were also destroyed, among hundreds of tunnels that were blocked in a fierce security campaign in the peninsula. Dozens of shacks, which security forces call “terrorist hubs” were also removed.

Vehicles and boats carrying tons of drugs, including opium and cannabis, were seized in Rafah, the Gulf of Suez in South Sinai, the south-eastern borders with Sudan, and in Egypt- Libya border city of Salloum.

Egypt is building a 1-KM wide buffer zone along the borders with Gaza, after a large-scale attack by Sinai-based Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis (ABM) that has killed over 30 security personnel in October. Police officials have reported the majority of assailants in those attacks have been subsequently killed in security raids.

ABM pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group (IS) in November and has since proclaimed itself as “Wilayat Sinai” (State of Sinai), claiming the peninsula now is under the control of IS, which controls swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq.

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