CAIRO: President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi decreed the formation of a “unified military leadership” for Sinai and areas east of the Suez Canal, headed by Maj. Gen. Osama Askar, following a meeting with the Supreme Council for Armed Forces.
“We will not leave the Sinai,” said Sisi in a televised address following the meeting.
The president cut short a visit to an African Union summit in Addis Ababa to return Friday, after a Thursday attack in the Sinai killed more than 40 military personnel and civilians.
On October 25, Sisi met with SCAF members following a suicide blast, which targeted a security checkpoint in North Sinai’s city of Sheikh Zuwayed that killed 30 military personnel and caused damage to two military vehicles.
After the meeting, Sisi issued a presidential decree declaring a state of emergency in several regions of North Sinai and also declared a three-month night curfew that was renewed last week.