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Israeli officials in secret Cairo visit

May 13, 2014 3:02 P.M. (Updated: May 13, 2014 8:13 P.M.)
CAIRO (Ma'an) – A high-profile delegation of Israeli officials landed in Cairo on Monday, an Egyptian official told Ma’an.

According to the well-placed official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, the delegation boarded a private plane which took off from Tel Aviv. They were welcomed at Cairo International Airport by Egyptian general intelligence officers.

The Egyptian authorities have not made any public announcements about what the source described as a "secret mission."

The official said the visiting Israeli officials would meet with their counterparts in the Egyptian foreign ministry and general intelligence service. They were expected to ask the Egyptians to help the new Israeli ambassador to Egypt with his daily operations.

They will also discuss mutual relations with Egypt and cooperation between both countries over security arrangements in the Sinai Peninsula, the source highlighted.

On Sunday, unidentified gunmen shot and killed an Egyptian soldier and injured another in the northern Sinai Peninsula, army sources said.

Egyptian military sources told Ma'an that unidentified gunmen opened fire at a group of soldiers in al-Joura village near Sheikh Zuweid, killing one and critically injuring another.

The soldiers fired back and the gunmen fled the scene, the sources said.

The injured soldier was taken to a military hospital in el-Arish.

Egyptian armed forces launched large scale military action against militants in the Sinai Peninsula in September, in what officials have described as the largest mobilization of force in the area since the 1973 war with Israel.

The military action comes in the wake of rising instability and almost daily attacks in the region, following a July coup by the Egyptian military which unseated President Mohammad Morsi.

Since then, Muslim Brotherhood activists have held weekly demonstrations in protest against the coup, while the army has consolidated its grip on power and violently repressed protests against its rule, killing around 1,400 according to Amnesty International.

At the same time, Wahhabi militant groups have stepped up a violent campaign of attacks against the government, particularly in the Sinai Peninsula.
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