Wednesday, Sept. 02
Latest News
  1. Palmyra temple destruction a 'crime against civilization'
  2. Saudi-led coalition air strikes in south Yemen kill 20
  3. Lebanon police ejecting protesters from ministry
  4. Libya car bomb wounds one, damages office of Eni firm
  5. UN envoy to meet with Libya's Tripoli parliament ahead of talks
  6. Border agency: Migrants using fake Syrian passports to enter EU
  7. Migrant trains arrive in Austria as crisis deepens
  8. Turkish court arrests British journalists on terror charges
  9. Locals: Boko Haram kills nearly 80 in NE Nigeria villages
  10. Austria smuggler crackdown as Europe divided over migrant crisis
  11. 'Largest ever' Med gas field found off Egypt
  12. Egypt muezzin suspended over 'Facebook prayer call'
  13. 3 Canadians, Pakistani, Nigerian among dead in Saudi fire
  14. 'A Sinner in Mecca' documents gay Muslim pilgrimage
  15. A year on, Yazidis so close yet so far from Iraq hub
  16. Delayed Egypt elections to start on October 17
  17. Blast at Syria's Palmyra prompts fears for famed temple
  18. 11 dead, dozens hurt in fire at Saudi oil giant housing complex
  19. Red Crescent: 7 bodies wash up on Libya beach
  20. Egypt elections to start on October 17

Egypt seizes explosives en route to Sinai smugglers

June 2, 2013 1:17 P.M. (Updated: June 3, 2013 5:20 P.M.)
SHARM AL-SHEIKH, Egypt (Ma'an) -- Egyptian authorities seized one ton of explosives destined for smugglers in the Sinai on Saturday, police told Ma'an.

The explosives were earmarked for the destruction of rocky mountains to make way for smuggling tunnels into the Gaza Strip, police said.

The munition was found hidden in cartons in the boot of a car from Cairo heading to the Ahmad Hamadi tunnel, and was stopped by police for inspection.

The driver told police he had intended to transfer the explosives to smugglers in Sinai. The driver was detained, police said.

In February, Egypt began a crackdown on Gaza's underground tunnel system, pumping sewage over fears that they are being used to smuggle weapons and fighters into the restive Sinai Peninsula.

Gaza's tunnelers told Reuters in March that nearly 60 percent of the estimated 1,000 smuggling routes under the border had been closed.

The Hamas government in Gaza said last week it was willing to close down all smuggling tunnels under the Egyptian border once a commercial crossing opens, the undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

"We do not want the tunnels in the first place," said Ghazi Hamad. "They burden citizens and cause hundreds of fatalities, but they are essential because there is no alternative."

"The tunnels issue can be resolved by finding a solution that balances the security needs of Egypt and the humanitarian needs of the Gaza Strip through lawful commercial transactions monitored by both," he added in a statement.

The statement followed seizure of half a ton of diesel headed to the Gaza Strip by Egyptian police, en route to one of the smuggling tunnels.

The one crossing into the Gaza Strip from Egypt -- Rafah -- is a passenger only crossing. On exceptional occasions it has been opened for the transfer of commercial goods, prompting critics to accuse Egypt of complicity in Israel's blockade of the Gaza Strip.

The tunnel industry thrived under Israel's blockade of the Gaza Strip, providing a lifeline by smuggling goods into the besieged enclave, ranging from cars, building materials to fast food.

Powered By: HTD Technologies
Ma'an News Agency
All rights reserved © 2005-2015