A spokesman for the Egyptian armed forces has denied claims that six Israeli military aircraft were able to breach Egyptian airspace earlier this week. Colonel Ahmed Mohamed Ali said that the claims circulating on social networking sites are hoping to exploit the current uncertainty in Egypt by creating doubts about the patriotism and efficiency of the Egyptian military.
Colonel Ali used his own Facebook page to allay fears and clarify what happened at dawn on Monday in the skies above Cairo and three other governorates. "We announced on Monday morning, with all transparency, the procedures carried out by the Egyptian Air Force to test the capabilities of our air defence system," he said. Some people, he pointed out, have spread disinformation and lies that six Israeli F-35 aircraft entered Egyptian airspace. "Such advanced US-made aircraft are not even being used by the US Air Force," he explained, "and the Israelis are not expected to have them before 2016."
The recent bombing of an arms depot in Sudan and the general regional instability, added Colonel Ali, make it essential for Egypt's armed forces to be kept in a state of readiness, which includes regular training exercises to cope with emergencies. "Monday's exercises across the country were designed to take the Air Force by surprise to test their ability to defend our airspace and cope with emergencies," he added.