Egypt's Interior Ministry is boosting its security deployment at the northern Sinai Peninsula in the framework of a comprehensive defense plan, regional commander Salah al-Masri said Saturday.
The troop reinforcement includes 150 special police forces sent to the area, which borders on Israel.
Meanwhile, Palestinian news agency Ma'an said Israel allowed Egyptian officials to dispatch seven military regiments to the Sinai in order to curb the growing terror threat in the region.
Senior Egyptian officials were quoted as saying that Israel is responsible for Egypt's
security vacuum in the Sinai, a fact that will require both sides to negotiate changes to the Camp-David peace accord, allowing more troops to enter the area.
According to the sources, the ban on Egyptian military deployment in some areas allows radical organizations to gain strength. Commander al-Masri said the comprehensive new security scheme includes massive efforts to secure the gas pipeline connecting Egypt to Israel and Jordan.
Egyptian forces will be securing the pipeline through regular patrols by armored vehicles. The forces will also increase the number of ambushes in the Sinai, officials said.
Wednesday night, three Grad rockets
were fired from the Sinai at the southern Israel resort town of Eilat. One rocket exploded and a second one was found in an open area near Eilat Saturday.