IDF Could Launch Preemptive Strikes against ISIS in Egypt

A senior military officer has said Israel could preemptively attack ISIS terrorists in neighboring Egypt's Sinai Peninsula, if they were about to attack Israeli soldiers or civilians.

The "threat of terror from Sinai" has grown in recent years, Brigadier General Royi Elcabets said on Wednesday.

Speaking at a ceremony marking the end of his two years as commander of the Edom division that controls the border with the Sinai, Elcabets said ISIS's Egypt affiliate – the so-called "Sinai Province" of the Islamic State terror group – could attempt to attack Israel.

"It is our duty to preempt it and strike at it, if and when this happens," he said in remarks relayed by the military.

Terrorists loyal to the Islamic State group have killed hundreds of Egyptian policemen and soldiers in Sinai since the army overthrew Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in 2013.

The Egyptian military says it has killed more than 1,000 terrorists Sinai, which borders Israel and the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.

ISIS in Sinai has also claimed responsibility for sporadic rocket fire against Israel.

An Israeli official familiar with the situation in Sinai would not address Elcabets's remarks, but told AFP that "Israel is coordinated with states in the region on matters pertaining to the war on terror and terror groups."

According to the official, following the attacks on Egyptian forces in Sinai, "Israel agreed to Egypt's request to allow more Egyptian forces and devices into Sinai, and provided intelligence to Egypt."  

The amount of Egyptian military forces allowed in Sinai is stipulated in the 1979 peace treaty with Israel, that led to its withdrawal from the peninsula.

Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/198828

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