Analysis

Egypt/Israel: Rising Sinai Violence a Serious Challenge for Morsi
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, right and Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak stand next to the wreckage of an Egyptian military vehicle captured by Sinai militants who drove it through a security fence into Israel on August 5, 2012. The militant group killed 16 Egyptian soldiers. The four militants in this vehicle were killed after it was destroyed by an Israeli airstrike. (Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
August 14, 2012
| Security
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Summary
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While Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi tried to shift the blame for growing violence in the Sinai by sacking top military leaders last weekend, this move probably will do little to address growing security risks stemming from militant activity in the region. The violence is a significant concern to Israel and will affect Egypt-Israel relations and the future of the 1979 Camp David Accords, as LIGNET explains.

As dramatic as Morsi’s August 12 decision to remove top military officials was, it did not overshadow concerns in both Egypt and Israel about growing violence and lawlessness on the Sinai Peninsula that began when Egyptian security forces withdrew from the region after the fall of former President Hosni Mubarak.  Morsi’s firing of Field Marshal Mohamed Tantawi and other top military officers was in response to a humiliating August 5 attack when Sinai militants seized two Egyptian military vehicles and killed 16 Egyptian soldiers near a Sinai-Israel border crossing. Sinai violence continued over the last week. Five militants were killed in the Sinai on August 12. Sinai gunmen shot dead an influential tribal leader and his son at a border crossing yesterday. 

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