Puppet Egypt Regime to expand buffer zone near Gaza Strip: Report
Egypt is reportedly to expand a buffer zone it has created along its border with the Palestinian territory of the Gaza Strip.
Abdel-Fattah Harhour, the governor for Egypt’s North Sinai governorate, said the expansion of the buffer zone was to go into its third phase in the near future, Turkey’s state-run Anadolu Agency reported on Thursday.
The area was stretched as far as one kilometer (0.6 mile) over the first two phases.
To make way for the establishment of the buffer zone, Egypt has demolished thousands of homes and displaced many people.
Over the past two years, North Sinai has witnessed the rise of deadly militancy, which has claimed the lives of scores of Egyptian security personnel.
The Cairo authorities decided to create the buffer zone after deadly attacks in the restive Sinai Peninsula that targeted more than 30 Egyptian soldiers in October 2014.
The military-backed Egyptian administration has accused the Gaza-based Palestinian resistance movement Hamas of helping militants operating in the North African country’s restive Sinai Peninsula.
Hamas, however, has strongly dismissed Egypt’s accusations against it concerning the militancy in Sinai.
Iyad al-Bozum, a spokesman for the Hamas Interior Ministry, emphasized last October that “Gaza has nothing to do with what is happening inside Egypt.”
Back in May, senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said the group itself was taking extra security measures along the border between Egypt and the Israeli-blockaded enclave in an attempt to prevent insecurity in the region.
“The security measures taken come out of our commitment and understanding that our struggle isn’t with our Arab and Muslim brothers, but with the Israeli occupation,” Haniyeh said.