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Security alert announced in Sinai after thwarted attack

Jan. 7, 2013 7:02 A.M. (Updated: Jan. 10, 2013 12:15 A.M.)
EL-ARISH, Egypt (Ma’an) -- Egypt's army on Monday announced a security alert in the Sinai peninsula bordering Israel and the Gaza Strip, after an attempted bomb attack was foiled by security forces earlier in the day.

A military source told Ma’an that intelligence services have received information in the last few hours about planned attacks by groups in the Sinai.

The groups are reacting to a statement by the minister of defense that military operations against militants in Sinai will continue, the source said.

Earlier Monday, a vehicle parked behind a border guard camp and a deserted church in Rafah was found full of explosives and an RPG shell.

Egypt's military clashed with masked gunmen fleeing the scene.

Security sources did not rule out the possibility that extremists were targeting the church, but said the most likely target was the Egyptian military base in the area.

Egyptian security forces have waged a security campaign in the desert Sinai region to reign in militant groups, after 16 Egyptian border guards were killed in an attack on their post in August.
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