Egyptian media sources have confirmed reports from Israeli intelligence agencies that the US has moved some of its naval forces from the Fifth Fleet closer to the Suez Canal. It is feared that the situation in Egypt could spiral out of control and threaten navigation in the Canal.
The Egyptian newspaper Al Masri Al Yawm has said that the naval personnel include 850 US Marines. They have taken up a strategic position near Ismailia, giving easy access to the main Egyptian land mass and the Sinai Peninsula. The newspaper cited Israeli sources regarding the deployment which came about following the statement by Vice President Omer Sulaiman that Egypt faces a choice between a coup d’état or dialogue.
Al Masri Al Yawm also referred to a recent report published in Israel’s Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper in which Israel Defence Forces officers have called for the re-occupation of the Philadelphia corridor located between Egypt and the Gaza Strip in the event of the total collapse of the Mubarak regime.