CAIRO: President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi discussed security, particularly measures taken by the armed forces and police against alleged terrorism hotbeds in northern Sinai, in a meeting with the Ministers of Defense and Interior Tuesday, stated Presidential Spokesperson Alaa Youssef.
“The president instructed full coordination between the armed forces and police and stressed the importance of maintaining the highest level of vigilance in the face of attempts to undermine the security of citizens and security forces,” the statement read.
The meeting came two days after a terror attack that targeted a security checkpoint in Arish and claimed the lives of 18 policemen Saturday evening. The Islamic State group (IS) affiliate in Egypt has claimed responsibility for the attack, AP reported.
The attack took place two days after President Sisi visited Egypt’s northern military region, in the restive North Sinai.
On Thursday, Sisi witnessed military naval exercises called “Maneuvers of Masts” in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria, and announced these maneuvers “send a message that Egypt is a strong state that defends and not attacks, and able to protect its coastline and its territory and to maintain national security.”
In its prolonged fight to purge terrorism in the area, the army has launched series of strikes and crackdowns that resulted in killing and arrest of hundreds of alleged militants in North Sinai.