Well-informed sources cited by Al-Araby Al-Jadeed said that a report prepared by the Egypt’s General Intelligence Directorate has warned President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi against the dangers of widening the scope of confrontation in the Sinai area between local tribes on the one hand and the Sinai Province group, which is affiliated to Daesh, on the other.
The sources are of “a military-academic nature,” Al-Araby Al-Jadeed pointed out.
The report warns against the idea of forming armed squads of civilians from among Sinai’s local tribes to fight the Sinai Province militant group under the Egyptian military’s supervision. The report also noted that the idea had been previously brought up several times in the country’s security circles, but was always met with rejection, the news website cited the sources as saying.
Eyebrows were raised in Egypt when Al-Tarabin Tribe, one of Sinai’s largest tribes, announced that it is at war with Daesh’s Sinai Province. “We operate under the state’s umbrella and under the command of our Armed Forces; and we are part of the Egyptian state and part and parcel of Egypt’s great people,” the tribe noted in its statement, which was released on 7 May.
According to the intelligence report that was recently presented to Sisi, the decision to allow Tarabin to fight against the Sinai Province could lead to catastrophic repercussions and opens the door for a“civil war” in the Sinai, Al-Araby Al-Jadeed said.
Violence has escalated in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, especially after the military ousted former president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013. Militant attacks by the Daesh-affiliate Sinai Province group have been on the rise in the peninsula.