Egypt extends state of emergency in N. Sinai for 3 months
Egyptian army in Sinai - YOUM7 (Archive)

CAIRO: President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi on Wednesday extended the current state of emergency in parts of North Sinai for an additional three months, Youm7 reported.

“The state of emergency will be implemented in North Sinai’s cities Arish, Sheikh Zuwayed and Rafah and the surrounding areas of Rafah’s hill and Al Ouga town east of North Sinai and from western Arish to the Al-Halal Mountain to the east,” a presidential statement read.

The decision, which was initially to be applied from April 29, will take effect after parliament approval, deputy parliamentary speaker Mahmoud al Sherif told Youm7 Thursday.

The state of emergency was first imposed under Sisi in October 2014 following an attack that killed over 30 soldiers. It has since been extended four times.

According to Article 2 of the decree, a nighttime curfew is to be extended in the same areas. A curfew will be imposed from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. the next day, while in certain parts of Arish the curfew will last from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m.

According to Article 3, the army and the police are responsible for “fighting terrorism” in the peninsula, and those who violate the decision or resist it might face imprisonment.

Egypt has witnessed a significant rise in militancy since Islamist President Mohamed Morsi was overthrown by the military in July 2013 following mass protests against his rule. According to the Interior Ministry, militant attacks have killed more than 500 security personnel since then.

During the past three years, the Sinai-based militant group, previously known as Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis before pledging allegiance to IS, has claimed responsibility for many attacks targeting the military in the peninsula.

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