Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said Sunday that a “unified Arab force” was needed to fight the growing terrorist threats in the Middle East.
"The need for a unified Arab force is growing and becoming more pressing every day," he was quoted by CNN as having said in a televised address, noting that Jordan and the United Arab Emirates have offered to send troops as Egypt steps up its efforts to battle the Islamic State (ISIS) in neighboring Libya.
"The challenges in the region, and facing our countries, are huge challenges, and … we can overcome those challenges once we are together," Sisi said.
On Sunday, Sisi stressed the Egyptian army isn't an aggressor angling to invade foreign territory.
"Your armed forces only protect the people of Egypt, and we coordinate with our Arab brothers," he said, according to CNN.
In addition to its recent attacks on ISIS, Egypt has also been fighting terrorism in the restive Sinai Peninsula, which has only gotten worse since the army removed former Islamist President Mohammed Morsi last year.
The ISIS-affiliated Ansar Bayt Al-Maqdis has declared responsibility for most of the attacks in the area. Among the attacks claimed by the group since Morsi's ouster was the assassination of a top Egyptian police general, who was gunned down as he left his home in a west Cairo neighborhood, and a bus bombing on a tour bus filled with South Korean tourists in the Sinai.